Rogers began work on Surrender — out July 29 via Capitol Records and available to preorder now — in early 2020 after a lengthy period of touring in support of her first album, which yielded the singer a Best New Artist Grammy nomination. During the pandemic, Rogers relocated to the Maine coast, cutting herself off from the outside world to write what became Surrender’s 12 tracks.
Co-produced by Rogers and Kid Harpoon, Surrender was ultimately recorded in three unique locations: Electric Lady Studios in New York City, Peter Gabriel’s Real World Studios near Bath, England, and her parents’ garage.
The process was a return of sorts to how Rogers first approached making music before she became an overnight sensation — after making Pharrell cry with her song “Alaska” when he sat in on her NYU class.
“I had always done most of my music myself,” Rogers told Carrie Brownstein in Rolling Stone’s Musicians on Musicians issue in 2020. “I had some really incredible co-producers on my record, but there was also this sort of speed-dating texture to it, which was really exhausting and sometimes empowering and sometimes belittling. And it was a very strange emotional dance. I really miss my solo process from high school and college at this point.”
Ahead of the album’s release, Rogers shared an artsy two-minute trailer for Surrender that previews new music and provides a poetic retelling of the album’s journey. “For a long time I fought it. Resisted. Held up my fists,” Rogers says in the album trailer. “Tried to hold the current. Foolish. I found peace in distortion. A chaos I could control. Turned the drums up real loud hoping they could shock me back in. Break the numbness. Let the bright lights drag me out. “
Following the release of Heard It in a Past Life, Rogers performed at the Democratic National Convention and — following an Election Day joke — covered the Goo Goo Dolls’ “Iris” alongside Phoebe Bridges to raise money for Stacey Abrams’ Fair Fight.