Melbourne-based band Hiatus Kaiyote have released “Chivalry Is Not Dead,” the latest single from their upcoming album Mood Valiant, out June 25th via Brainfeeder Records/Ninja Tune.
The funky track has an unusual and NSFW subject matter: the bizarre mating rituals of leopard slugs (who turn fluorescent during copulation) and seahorses (who lock tails and dance).
“After we did [our second album] Choose Your Weapon, we had to make radio edits of our songs, and all of our shit is like six or seven minutes long!” lead singer Nai Palm recalls. “So ‘Chivalry’ was me fucking with the ‘hit record’ formula. I’m gonna write a song that’s 3:40 long, and it’s about sex, but I’m gonna make it fucking weird. Examples from the natural world that are fucking with the status quo.”
“Chivalry Is Not Dead” follows previous Mood Valiant singles “Red Room” and “Get Sun.” The album marks their first in six years, as Choose Your Weapon was released back in 2015. The delay comes in part due to Nai Palm’s breast cancer diagnosis in 2018; after she underwent a life-saving mastectomy, the band resumed recording.
“She came back in like a champion,” bassist Paul Bender says of the singer. “I’ve never seen anyone go through something like that and be so triumphant, vibrant, present, grateful. She was alive. It reframes what things you should put your energy into: Let’s just all be alive.”