Toro y Moi, the musical project of songwriter and producer Chaz Bear, has released “The Loop,” the third single from the Bay Area-musician’s upcoming album, Mahal, out April 29 via Dead Oceans.
The lighthearted video accompanying the song, directed by Brendan Nakahara, pays homage to Bear’s adopted hometown, displaying ample footage of San Francisco’s iconic Golden Gate and Bay Bridges interspersed with clips of the musician and a group of friends skateboarding, riding in GoCars and grabbing dinner at Oakland hotspot FOB Kitchen.
Over an ambling, velvety beat that evokes the easygoing acid-jazz grooves of funk powerhouse Roy Ayers, Bear laments the mundane anxieties of 21st century living. “East Coast friends fill me in, I know you get the early scoop,” he sings. “Online trends that border cringe start to feel overused.” It’s an atypical sonic palette for a song about becoming swept up in the confusions of day-to-day life — but Bear’s breezy, almost nonchalant mode of confronting these emotions feels more like an act of radical defiance, rather than one of apathetic resignation.
Mahal follows Toro y Moi’s critically acclaimed 2019 album Outer Peace and features appearances from visual artist and musician Sofie Royer, Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s Ruban Neilson, Neon Indian’s Alan Palomo and jazz duo the Mattson 2. “I wanted to make a record that featured more musicians on it than any other record of mine,” Bear said in a release. “To have them live on that record feels grounded, bringing a communal perspective to the table.”
Toro y Moi will embark upon a short U.S. tour in support of Mahal this summer, bookended by a handful of festival appearances. After a performance at Smokin Grooves Festival in Los Angeles in mid-March, the Mahal tour kicks off April 29 in Cincinatti, Ohio, before wrapping up May 11 in Houston, Texas. Bear is also scheduled to play Electric Forest Festival in Rothbury, Mich., June 23 through 26, and Seattle’s famed Capitol Hill Block Party on July 23.