Xiu Xiu have announced their 12th studio album OH NO, out on March 26 via Polyvinyl. The album consists of various duets, featuring Sharon Van Etten, Chelsea Wolfe and Alice Bag, plus members of Deerhoof, Drab Majesty, Liars and many more. The duo has also shared the album’s lead single, “A Bottle of Rum,” which features Grouper’s Liz Harris, plus an Angela Seo-directed video. “A Bottle of Rum” is an electro-pop stunner, with crunchy drums, Harris’ saintly vocals and atmospheric textures galore, and its juxtaposition of artful calm with immersive exhilaration is especially stirring.
Jamie Stewart says of their new single:
I had been trying to write a song on this bajo quinto to no avail and then drunkenly (“A Bottle of Rum”) listened to Liz’s song, “Heavy Water/I’d Rather Be Sleeping.” A spark shone and feebly I tried to write something that, at least at first, sounded like it. I had asked Liz Harris, who is an old friend, if she would sing on this new record of duets. Initially I thought of her for another song but she specifically, although not knowing she had been the inspiration behind it in the first place, asked to be on this one. If the stars ever have aligned… well then.
Seo says of the video:
This video, as often is with Xiu videos, is an amalgamation of things that I want and am into lately. When I was a kid, I always wanted a video camera and was fascinated with tapes, but couldn’t afford one. I’m an adult now, and can buy what I want, so I bought a used mini DV camera. I like how the tapes look, the specific way they capture color, and also the tactile feeling of inserting and ejecting a tape. Also, I’ve always had a love for noir films and their penchant for shadows, fate, doom, and drama. Our friend and superb drummer David Kendrick (Sparks, Devo, Xiu Xiu) wrote a three part noir story and this is part 1. In keeping with the times, most of this was intentionally DIY, shot alone or with just a couple of friends and a tripod.
Watch the video for “A Bottle of Rum,” and preorder the album here. Scroll down for the album artwork and tracklist.
01. Sad Mezcalita (Sharon Van Etten)
02. I Cannot Resist (Deb Demure / Drab Majesty)
03. The Grifters (Haley Fohr)
04. Goodbye For Good (Greg Saunier / Deerhoof)
05. OH NO (Susanne Sachsse)
06. Rumpus Room (Angus Andrew / Liars)
07. Fuzz Gong Fight (Angela Seo / Xiu Xiu)
08. I Dream of Someone Else Entirely (Owen Pallett)
09. One Hundred Years (Chelsea Wolfe) [The Cure cover]
10. A Classic Screw (Fabrizio Modonese Palumbo)
11. It Bothers Me All the Time (Jonathan Meiburg / Shearwater)
12. Saint Dymphna (George Lewis Jr. / Twin Shadow)
13. Knock Out (Alice Bag)
14. A Bottle of Rum (Liz Harris)
15. ANTS (Valerie Diaz)