Savannah, Georgia alt-metal outfit Baroness have served a new track, “Chlorine and Wine,” the first taste of their long-awaited fourth LP, Purple, set for release on December 18th via the band’s new label, Abraxan Hymns.
The sprawling, nearly seven-minute track comes with a beautifully animated clip and opens with a dreamy melange of piano and twinkling feedback. After the introduction of meandering guitar, the track builds into a propulsive chug as frontman John Baizley enters, growling gory, despondent lines like, “And my doctor’s unable to cut through the cable that leads to my mind.”
“Chlorine and Wine” builds even more to a blistering solo, then tapers back before exploding into a rousing, celebratory final section, in which Baizley howls, “Please, don’t lay me down!”
Purple arrives three years after Baroness’ expansive, widely lauded Yellow and Green and was produced by David Fridmann (Flaming Lips, MGMT) at Tarbox Road Studios in Cassadaga, New York. Per Baizley, the band was focused on making a “much more direct and immediate” record after the “lengthy and investigative” Yellow and Green.
“We wanted to write with our normal focus on artistry, balanced against an increased level of energy and focus,” Baizley added. “It was important for us to write our new songs with the type of enthusiasm and expressiveness that could act as a counterpoint to the album’s dark themes. As a result, the music came out in an intense, heavy and sonically captivating in a new way, which was important, loathe, as we are to fall into any kind of complacency pitfall or formulaic songwriting routine.”
Pre-orders for Purple are now available via iTunes, Amazon and Google Play, all of which come with an instant download of “Chlorine and Wine.” On PledgeMusic, various Purple packages are also available, including a limited edition colored vinyl version of the LP, two picture discs, T-shirts and other items.
Purple also marks Baroness’ first album with new bassist/keyboardist Nick Jost and drummer Sebastian Thomson. The pair replaced Matt Maggioni and Allen Blickle, respectively, both of whom departed the band after sustaining serious injuries in a 2012 bus accident that left nine injured.
“For some of us, the accident necessitated a change that would prevent them from performing music or touring,” Baizley wrote at the time. “The details of their departure are not sensational; they do not come with hard feelings. Nor are the details going to be public; suffice it to say we’d like to keep to ourselves the finer points of this situation, to respect the privacy of all involved.”
Purple Track List
2. “Shock Me”
3. “Try to Disappear”
6. “Chlorine & Wine”
7. “The Iron Bell”
8. “Desperation Burns”
9. “If I Have to Wake Up (Would You Stop the Rain)”
10. “Crossroads of Infinity”