Robert Plant has shared the haunting first taste of his upcoming LP, titled lullaby and… The Ceaseless Roar. The singer’s new track “Rainbow” – which premiered on Monday at NPR– finds the former Led Zeppelin frontman cooing dreamy lines over droning guitars and a percussive stomp. The album is set for release on September 9th via Nonesuch/Warner Bros. Records.
“My hand shall not tremble; my feet shall not falter,” Plant sings in a soothing style reminiscent of Roy Orbison, as his killer backing band builds tension with a handful of pulsating chords. “I will sing my song for you, and I will carry on.”
The 11-track lullaby, Plant’s first album since 2010’s Band of Joy,was produced by Plant and largely recorded at Peter Gabriel’s Real World studios. Last month, Plant spoke to Rolling Stone about the album, calling it a “celebratory record” and describing the sound as “very crunchy and gritty, very West African and very Massive Attack-y.” He also added, perhaps unaware of the future premiere source, “There’s a lot of bottom end, so it might sound all right at a Jamaican party, but I’m not sure it would sound all right on NPR.” (In a press release, he uses a similar description of “trance meets Zep.”)
Nine of the album’s 11 tracks are originals written by Plant and his new band, the Sensational Space Shifters. Pre-orders are currently available at Plant’s official website and feature a limited-edition print, along with an instant download of “Rainbow.” Plant and the Space Shifters will tour the U.S. this fall, including a pair of dates at the Brooklyn Academy of Music on September 27th and 28th.
“The whole impetus of my life as a singer has to be driven by a good brotherhood,” Plant said in a statement. “I am very lucky to work with The Sensational Space Shifters. They come from exciting areas of contemporary music. . . and now I’m able to express my feelings through melody, power and trance; together in a kaleidoscope of sound, colour and friendship.”
With a new album and tour on the horizon, Plant is clearly focused on living in the present. Back in May, the singer slammed the idea of a Led Zeppelin reunion tour in a separate Rolling Stone interview, saying, “I’m not part of a jukebox.”