Perfume Genius Returns to the Heartland on “Describe,” Announces New Album

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Perfume Genius Returns to the Heartland on “Describe,” Announces New Album

Mike Hadreas (Perfume Genius) is back like you’ve never heard him before. Announcing his fifth album Set My Heart On Fire Immediately Tuesday, he shares the record’s first single titled “Describe,” which finds Hadreas exploring all-new sonic territory, embodying Americana classics like Bruce Springsteen and Tom Petty, with arena-filling slide guitars and roots-rock, blue-collar attitude. It’s Hadreas’ first release since last year’s The Sun Still Burns Here, a musical dance collaboration alongside Seattle choreographer Kate Wallich.

Of course, given who Hadreas has been as an artist so far, it feels intentionally iconoclastic, a play on masculine expectations and boundaries. The video opens with Hadreas taking a big, confrontational puff of a cigar, donning a dirty white tank top as he occupies a prairie farm. The video is laden with iconic queer imagery, such as Hadreas’ longtime partner and collaborator Alan Wyffels bound to a tree by rope in much the same way as Saint Sebastian. The video was directed by Hadreas himself. He describes it as “an end of the world where there are no boundaries, there are no edges, no rules, or the rules are completely new with how you interact with each other and the space around you.” There’s a sense of deep togetherness borne from living outside the heteronormative gaze, finding joy in life after the end—communities like this can only be crafted from destruction.

Largely, the album seems to be an exploration of Hadreas’ favored themes of sex, love and bodies, only with a newfound mythic code and musical aesthetic. “I wanted to feel more open, more free and spiritually wild,” says Hadreas, “and I’m in a place now where those feelings are very close—but it can border on being unhinged. I wrote these songs as a way to be more patient, more considered—to pull at all these chaotic threads hovering around me and weave them in to something warm, thoughtful and comforting.”

Perfume Genius will soon embark on a North American tour in support of Tame Impala. You can check out their dates below, as well as info on the album. Set My Heart On Fire Immediately will be released May 15 on Matador.

Set My Heart On Fire Immediately Album Art:


Set My Heart On Fire Immediately Tracklist:
01. Whole Life
02. Describe
03. Without You
04. Jason
05. Leave
06. On the Floor
07. Your Body Changes Everything
08. Moonbend
09. Just A Touch
10. Nothing At All
11. One More Try
12. Some Dream
13. Borrowed Light

Perfume Genius Tour Dates:

29 – Chicago, Ill. @ United Center#
30 – Milwaukee, Wis. @ Fiserv Forum#
31 – Detroit, Mich. @ Little Caesars Arena#

02 – Toronto, Ont. @ Scotiabank Arena#
03 – Montreal, Que. @ Bell Centre#
05 – Randall’s Island, N.Y. @ Governors Ball
06 – Washington, D.C. @ Capital One Arena#
08 – Charlotte, N.C. @ Spectrum Center#
09 – Atlanta, Ga. @ State Farm Arena#
11 – Miami, Fla. @ AmericanAirlines Arena#
12 – Orlando, Fla. @ Amway Center#
14 – Manchester, Tenn. @ Bonnaroo

17 – Minneapolis, Minn. @ Xcel Energy Center#
19 – St. Louis, Mo. @ Enterprise Center#
20 – Kansas City, Mo. @ Sprint Center#
21 – Tulsa, Okla. @ BOK Center#
23 – Austin, Texas @ Frank Erwin Center#
24 – Dallas, Texas @ American Airlines Center#
25 – Houston, Texas @ Toyota Center#
28 – Glendale, Ariz. @ Gila River Arena#
30 – Denver, Colo. @ Pepsi Center#

01 – Salt Lake City, Utah @ Vivint Smart Home Arena#
03 – Portland, Ore @ MODA Center#
05 – Vancouver, B.C. @ Rogers Arena#
07 – George, Wash. @ The Gorge Amphitheatre#

(# = support for Tame Impala)

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