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Hear This: Kurt Vile - Bassackwards


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Kurt Vile returns with his second single from his forthcoming album, Bottle It In, due out on 12 October - his seventh solo studio record since last year’s collaboration with Courtney Barnett on Lotta Sea Lice.

Where ‘Loading Zones’ (set to be the opener) established a more chaotic, rougher aesthetic than 2015’s b’lieve I’m goin down, ‘Bassackwards’ is lush and expansive, while retaining the organic charm of the first single. Vile’s previous album cultivated the slacker’s attitude so far as to spill into lethargy. Here the rambling effortlessness key to the Philadelphian’s musical style feels far more focussed; even on a track that exceeds nine minutes in duration.

The accompanying video also carefully balances the seemingly off-the-cuff with sheer professionalism. It’s shot to look amateurish, yet every clip and lyrical interjection is stitched together with great attention to detail.

It seems the multi-instrumentalist has come out of his songwriting project with Barnett rejuvenated and with greater clarity than before. If Barnett’s Tell Me How You Really Feel is one brilliant half of the outcome of their 2017 collaboration, then we can be assured that the residual effects will be heard on upcoming material from Vile.

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