Today sees art-punks Xiu Xiu return with the announcement of their 12th studio album, Oh No, a collection of duets set to be released on March 26th. Hand in hand with the announcement the two-piece have shared the albums lead single A Bottle of Rum which features Liz Harris of Grouper.
More melodic than Xiu Xiu’s previous releases, A Bottle of Rum holds Liz Harris’ vocal harmonies which combine wonderfully with Stewart’s exuberant lyricisms.
Speaking of the track, Stewart states that he had ‘been trying to write a song on a bajo quinto with no avail, I drunkenly listened to the Grouper song ‘Heavy Water / I’d Rather Be Sleeping’, a spark shone and I tried to write something that sounded like it’. He continues, ‘I had asked Liz Harris (the genius behind Grouper), if she would sing on this new record of duets. She specifically, without knowing she had been the inspiration behind it in the first place, asked to be on this one.’
The accompanying video shows a hazy atmosphere with soothing pastel tones and surreal imagery, including death collecting citrus fruits, severed heads unearthed from gardens and a morbidly carved pomegranate.
According to Xiu Xiu’s Jamie Stewart, Oh No was born from betrayal yet now exists ‘thanks to the profound rediscovery of community and friendship’, the album features collaborations with a wide scope of artists including the likes of Sharon Van Etten, Chelsea Wolfe, Alice Bag, Circuit des Yeux, Owen Pallett and Twin Shadow alongside members of Drab Majesty, Liars and many more.