Krill released their last LP, 2013's breakthrough Lucky Leaves, by unconventional means, hiding music-filled USB sticks in balls of mozzarella cheese and selling them for 100 dollars a piece. None were purchased, but the record's grungy musings on millennial angst eventually earned the band a dedicated East Coast following. The follow-up, A Distant Fist Unclenching, is set for a non-edible February 17th release.
"Tiger," the album's second single, is the perfect introduction to the strange world of Krill: While a sparkly guitar line dips through a muted rhythm section, Furman's frantic, off-kilter vocals tell the story of a villager who is mauled by a tiger, even though he is liked by everyone he meets – even tigers.
As Krill become more popular, it's possible that their eccentricities will be misread or overscrutinized. They lament a December write-up in which they appeared a tad ungrateful, but overall, they're not worried about how they are perceived. "There are bands who take themselves 100 percent seriously and are like, 'We have to make a Facebook post at 4 p.m. alerting our fans to our upcoming event and our social media presence!'" says Ian Becker, the band's drummer. "And there are also bands who don't come from that perspective at all and think it's just fun. Krill feels somewhere between the two."
"Believe it or not, we have no goals as a band," says frontman Jonah Furman. "We just keep going, and if anything else really good came up for any of us, like if someone had a baby or something, we'd say, 'Good, someone finally found something worth doing more than this.'" He stops to consider how this sounds. "It's kind of like we're playing a board game, and you just keep playing but it's not even clear what you're trying to win."
Krill envision the rest of A Distant Fist as falling somewhere between the anxiety-ridden Lucky Leaves and last January's engagingly weird, semi-concept EP Steve Hears Pile in Malden and Bursts into Tears, a 20-minute saga based partially on their love for Pile, a fellow Boston band.
"I was thinking about how Lucky Leaves had all of this sad shit, and I believed in it and totally agree with it, but I wanted to see where you could go after that," says Furman. "The fist unclenching is what happens after a tortured moment. It's how to move from that anxiety without being too naive or too cynical – without being happy-go-lucky or saying, 'Fuck it, nothing matters.'"
A Distant Fist Unclenching will be released next month on Exploding in Sound. Tour dates and pre-order options are available on Krill's Bandcamp.