IDLES – ” Ultra Mono “

Posted: October 15, 2020 in ALBUMS, MUSIC
Tags: , , , ,

Following Brutalism (2017) and Joy as an Act of Resistance (2018), two releases that garnered global critical acclaim, IDLES return with their highly anticipated third album – “Ultra Mono”. Sonically constructed to capture the feeling of a hip-hop record (including production contribution from Kenny Beats), the album doubles down on the vitriolic sneer and blunt social commentary of their past work. Not far beneath the surface of their self-admitted sloganeering lies a deeply complex and brutally relevant album that chews up clichés and spits them out as high art for the masses. This is momentary acceptance of the self. This is Ultra Mono.

Since their 2017 debut Brutalism, British punks IDLES have seemed like a band on a mission. Release a record, tour hard, write more songs, make another album, do it all again. Their new record Ultra Mono is their third in four years, which is impressive when you see the band’s immense pre-pandemic touring schedule. “We never stop writing,” says frontman Joe Talbot,

The band have a method for writing an album that goes well beyond standing in a room and playing. They are organised and focused, which ensures their records remain centred on a theme. “With every album, we start with the title – and artwork normally comes to mind – with a theme around it, and then I kind of build the idea around the album,” Talbot says. “Then we start writing the songs specifically to those ideas, with the idea that if we’ve got boundaries, we can all work within them and work together better, because we’re very different people.

“It’s important for us to understand each other moving forward, because we write democratically. We don’t want it to be some sort of autocracy. We all pitch in.m This time around, Talbot wanted to write about internal struggles. The frontman admits to struggling with certain sides of fame, notably the understanding that his work will now be noticed by more people than ever. Such a profile comes with pressure, and feelings that threaten to inhibit creativity. “I was going through a lot of self-doubt around writing,” he says. “There’s a lot of eyes and ears on us, way more than before Joy… [2018 album Joy Is An Act of Resistance] came out.

“So, I just wanted to focus on that idea of self-awareness as a way of progress and understanding what self-care really meant.” So, Ultra Mono became a record about accepting yourself for who and what you are.

KEXP.ORG presents IDLES sharing songs recorded exclusively for KEXP and talking with Kevin Cole. Recorded Thursday, October 1st, 2020.
Songs:
Model Village
Mr. Motivator
War
Grounds

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Ultra Mono will be released on 25th September 2020 on Partisan Records.

Released September 25th, 2020

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