Florence and the Machine will release their fourth studio album, High as Hope, on June 29th via Republic Records. The art-pop band teased the LP – which follows 2015’s How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful – with its soulful lead single, “Hunger.”
Throughout the track, singer Florence Welch meditates on the correlation between beauty, romance and mortality. “At 17, I started to starve myself/ I thought that love was a kind of emptiness,” she belts over stomping piano. “And at least I understood then the hunger I felt/ and I didn’t have to call it loneliness.”
The group also premiered the track’s high-brow video, which veers between Welch dancing in a hallway, groups of people marveling at a statue and cosmic swirls of paint.
In a statement, Welch noted that “Hunger” explores “the ways we look for love in things that are perhaps not love, and how attempts to feel less alone can sometimes isolate us more.” She added, “I guess I made myself more vulnerable in this song to encourage connection because perhaps a lot more of us feel this way than we are able to admit. Sometimes when you can’t say it, you can sing it.”
The xx’s Jamie xx, Kamasi Washington, Sampha, Tobias Jesso Jr. and Kelsey Lu make guest appearances on the album. Welch recorded the bulk of High as Hope in her Peckham, London studio before finishing with co-producer Emile Haynie (Lana Del Rey, Mark Ronson, Lady Gaga) in Los Angeles and mixing in New York.
Florence and the Machine – High as Hope Track List
3. “South London Forever”
4. “Big God”
5. “Sky Full of Song”
8. “100 Years”
9. “The End of Love”
10. “No Choir”