Published Mar 27, 2014Vancouver discordant punks White Lung are feeling the euphoria of their recent signing to Domino and a completed new album on the horizon. And while we already knew the teaser 7-inch "Drown with the Monster"/"Snake Jaw" is out April 29 via their new label home, we now have all the album details.
Called Deep Fantasy, the album is due out June 17, and singer Mish Way tells Exclaim! that the band's third record is going to turn some heads when it's released this summer. Joined by original drummer Anne-Marie Vassiliou, longtime guitarist Kenneth William and touring bassist Hether Fortune (also the vocalist for Oakland, CA's Wax Idols), Way says the album is a definite step above their previous material.
"It's just a fat rock record, but it's still super aggressive and it's the most intelligent songwriting we've ever done," says Way. "Ken's guitar parts are totally amazing; they're so delicate and smart. Some people don't get everything that he's doing, they just get bulldozed by the other stuff. But his guitar work on this record is insane. It's a great record."
Domino is known for its eclectic roster, which includes Animal Collective, Arctic Monkeys and Hot Chip, to name just three, and one of the reasons why White Lung went with the London/New York-based label was because they would stand out amongst its other bands, according to Way.
"After spring last year we had a lot of different labels contacting us, but Domino seemed the best to me because there were no other bands on that label that were like us, and what we were doing, which I really liked," she says. "They really understand what our band is about and what we want to do, so we're super excited to have the record come out on such a great label."
Both of songs on the 7-inch, "Drown with the Monster" and its backside, "Snake Jaw," will be featured on the upcoming album, one that Way says is just as uncompromising as their previous material, which was another reason the band felt comfortable in the hands of Domino.
"I have a pretty clear statement, lyrically, as far as the things I talk about and I didn't want to curb that; I just wanted to propel it further," she says about the talks they had with the label prior to signing. "Also, we didn't want to have to stop the speed or aggressive or loudness of our band, or anything like that, but at the same time we're all musicians and we're always going to get bored and want to try and do new things. This new record is different; it's still a White Lung record, but it's different."
Once again working with Vancouver-based producer Jesse Gander (Japandroids, Bison B.C., the Pack A.D.) with mastering by Timeless Mastering's Heba Kadry out of New York, the album has a very full sound, says Way.
"We've recorded with Jesse since the beginning and I wouldn't want to work with anyone else," she says, "and then we got Heba to master it and she just made the songs so loud and amazing. So her and Jesse made a really good mixing/mastering team."
Way points again to William's guitar work on the upcoming album as a definite highlight. In fact, she says his guitar playing has progressed to the point where he should be considered among the six-stringed greats.
"When you really stop and think about what he's doing, he's such an incredible guitar player. Nobody plays like him. I dare someone to find a guitar player as unique and inventive that plays in his style today. There isn't one! There's just these stupid bar chords and these noodley solos, and that's fine, but what he's doing is orchestra shit. It's fucking insane."
Lyrically, Way says the new album was a progression for her as well, mostly due to her having more time to self-edit.
"I feel like the lyrics are less reactionary and immediate, and more thoughtful," she says. "Normally when I would write lyrics in the beginning of White Lung we'd write in our jam space and I would take the first thing that came into my head. I could be a song about someone bumping into me too hard on the street earlier that day that would be in there, you know, because that's what I was pissed off about at that moment.
"But now with this new record and the way we've been writing songs, I've had a lot more time to sit down and toil with my lyrics, and edit them, and play with them, and think about what I really want to say. This record is talking very universally, in a way, while still being very selfish and abstract and individual, which is the only way I really know how to write."
For now, watch the video for "Drowned with the Monster" below, where you'll also find White Lung's upcoming North American dates.
1. Drown With The Monster
2. Down It Goes
3. Snake Jaw
4. Face Down
5. I Believe You
6. Wrong Star
7. Just For You
9. Lucky One
10. In Your Home
06/25 Brooklyn, NY - Saint Vitus
06/26 New York, NY - Mercury Lounge
06/27 Montreal, QC - Le Divan Orange
06/28 Toronto, ON - The Garrison
Read our cover story on White Lung here.