Americana roots rockers The Black Lillies have announced that their fifth studio album, Stranger To Me, will be released September 28 via Attack Monkey Productions and Thirty Tigers. With the announcement has come “Midnight Stranger,” an infectious lead single that’s stacked with three-part harmonies, piercing electric guitar and pulsing piano.
There’s a dark and sultry streak within “Midnight Stranger” that shimmers in the glow of a full moon. It’s a late night stroll in a dimly light bar filled with chance encounters and flushed with neon. There are shades of California country that radiate on the harmony-laden chorus. An effortlessly sleek electric offers a blazing strut.
“Midnight stranger, tight pair of Wranglers, tickets to New Mexico. Sweet Sangria on Catalina. Take your chances. The midnight stranger” they sing on the smooth chorus. Though it’s not necessarily a linear narrative, lines pop due to their vivid imagery. They’re like Polaroid stills that flash for brief moments before going onto the next.
The Knoxville-based outfit—Cruz Contreras, Bowman Townsend, Sam Quinn and Dustin Schafer—recorded the Stranger To Me at Echo Mountain Studios in Asheville, N.C. They were joined by producer Jamie Candiloro (Ryan Adams, R.E.M., The Eagles) for the Hard to Please follow-up.
The bulk of the album was largely seen sharpened and arranged by weekly song performances by the band called The Sprinter Sessions. With roughly 30 songs to choose from, the new album began to take shape. Contreras calls Stranger To Me “the most refined [album] to date,” noting that “songs sound fuller and lusher than ever before. Much like other albums recorded at Echo Mountain Studios (American Aquarium‘s Wolves, The War On Drugs’ Lost In the Dream), The Black Lillies seem to capture a magic on Stranger To Me that highlights their most rocking attributes while further expanding their sonic soundscape.
The Black Lillies will embark on a 16-week tour that kicks off in Nashville on August 29 and has stops in cities such as Dallas, Boston, Little Rock, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Cleveland, Charlottesville and Houston. For more information, click here.
Stranger To Me Track List:
1. “Ten Years”
2. “Midnight Stranger”
4. “Out of the Blue”
5. “Don’t Be Afraid”
6. “No Other Way”
7. “Joy and Misery”
9. “Ice Museum”
10. “River Rolls”
11. “Third Place”
12. “Snakes and Telephones”
13. “Someday, Sometime”