If there’s one thing predictable about London buzz band black midi, it’s that they’re always unpredictable. Case in point: Their sophomore effort Cavalcade, set for release via Rough Trade Records on Friday, May 28, started streaming nearly two days early on Wednesday, out of nowhere, via the “Cavalcade Listening Party Extravaganza” YouTube livestream.
A mock Q&A with “Cameron Picton,” “Morgan Simpson” and “Geordie Greep” (impostors all) precedes the album itself, black midi’s follow-up to their 2019 debut Schlagenheim, featuring singles “John L, “Slow” and “Chondromalacia Patella.”
Cavalcade is all but sure to be divisive. Black midi’s sound, an unholy marriage of prog, math-rock and other sonic outliers, is so overwhelming that it can be easy to get swept up in, but their new record finds them making strides to redefine that sound, focusing more on quiet, melodic moments that may or may not be their strong suits. Nonetheless, “Those fans willing to wade through the band’s murkier excursions will find a brilliant second album lurking somewhere within Cavalcade,” Zach Schonfeld writes in his review of the record for Paste.
Stream Cavalcade below and read Paste’s review here.