Grooms announce new album “Exit Index” out October 20. First Single “Turn Your Body” premiere

Grooms are happy to announce the upcoming new album, Exit Index, to be released via Western Vinyl on October 20.   Today the band shares a video for the album’s first single, “Turn Your Body” which stars author/comedian Darcie Wilder and was directed by the band. The video premiered via Stereogum who noted, “the song presents a more softly psychedelic interpretation of Grooms’ Sonic Youth-inspired sound.” Grooms’ Travis Johnson told them, “‘Turn Your Body’ is loosely about getting married, which I did last year. We actually got sent the mix the night before the wedding.”  Read the rest of the statement here and watch “Turn Your Body” here.

Exit Index is the follow up to Grooms’ 2015’s Comb The Feelings Through Your Hair which Pitchfork labeled “defiantly liberated.”  The band is singer-guitarist Travis Johnson, drummer Steve Levine, and bassist Jay Heiselmann.  On Exit Index the band combines the abandon of pop with the unease of American life in 2017, cloaking its hooks in a clamor of samples and distortion, its agitation expressed in its dream-poetry lyrics. The album as a whole is a study in contrasts-light meeting dark, amplifier fuzz surrounding big melodies, sampled friction squaring off with fluidly played basslines and tightly wound rhythms.

Grooms laid down the skeleton tracks for Exit Index at the storied New York recording studio The Magic Shop, the last band to record there.  “It was the end,” recalls Johnson. “We ended up bashing out 13 or 14 songs-of which we kept 10-in about six hours, because it was the last day. The engineer was like, ‘I can’t believe it. This is like working on a record in the ’60s, where the band comes in and they know everything super well, because they have to.'” Collin Dupuis (Angel Olsen, Lana Del Rey) mixed the album, adding a few finishing touches to intros and song structures while also making the structures Grooms constructs sound even more massive and imposing. Exit Index marks the first time Grooms had the same lineup for two records in a row and Johnson further notes, “you can hear how locked in we are. The songs are better after we all have a say in them.”

Johnson, who has co-owned the Brooklyn pedal company Death By Audio Effects since 2008, made a limited-edition distortion pedal to celebrate the album’s release. “There’s a lot of tremolo on Exit Index,” he says, “so I made a fucked-up-sounding trem. I designed it to be dense and possibly confusing at first, where all the controls affect what the other controls do, like a synth. It can tremolo, or it can degrade things like they’re on worn-out cassette tapes.”

Exit Index is a portrait of unease, its abstracted poetry and sonic murk giving rise to a catchy, dense disquiet. “In a way, I feel like it’s a really appropriate record for this time,” says Johnson. “It feels unintentional, though-I wasn’t thinking, ‘I want to soundtrack 2017,’ or anything like that. It’s hard for me to listen to it now, because I’ll listen to it and I’ll be like, ‘God, I wish that this were a fever dream, but it’s not.’ But that lines up with what’s going on in the world, too.”

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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