On June 12, Manchester Orchestra frontman Andy Hull will release “The Church of the Good Thief,” the third album in the trilogy of his solo project, Right Away, Great Captain! This new chapter completes the tale Hull began on 2006′s “The Bitter End” and 2008′s “The Eventually Home” of a sailor who, upon discovering his wife cheating on him with his brother, runs away to sea and gradually descends into a vengeful rage.
“The Church of the Good Thief” will be released via all major digital retailers, and will also be available, along with “The Bitter End” and “The Eventually Home,” in a four-LP vinyl box set. Additionally, the deluxe pre-order package for the vinyl box set will include “The Lost Sea,” a collection of unreleased songs, demos and outtakes, as well as a handmade lyric book and keychain, and a photo print by Ryan Russell, all hand-numbered and signed by Hull. The album pre-order begins today at http://rightawaygreatcaptain.bandcamp.com/
Hull will support the album with a brief Midwest and East Coast solo tour in July, hitting markets including Chicago, Detroit, Pittsburgh, Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore and New York; see below for a complete list of dates. Tickets are available to fans now via a Ducat King presale at http://rightawaygreatcaptain.ducatking.com/ and go on sale to the general public on Thursday, May 24 at 12:00 PM local time.
Hull began the Right Away, Great Captain! project in 2006 as a writing exercise. “I had the storyline for the first album in my head,” he explains, “and started to write it in this other characters body. It was really rewarding as a writer to put yourself in someone else’s position and give yourself some walls that you could not break. I had always wanted to embark on something like a trilogy and from the beginning, I felt like three albums could sum up the story. If I didn’t set out for it to be a trilogy, I could have extended this story and it would have gotten stale and I don’t know if I ever would have finished it. What I could not have ever expected was the amount of growth that I went through personally from ages 19 to 25, because you don’t really think about that when you’re 19. As I began to grow, the character grew, and when the character grew, the story grew too.”
“The Eventually Home” ended with our protagonist returning home from three years at sea and standing over his wife and brother asleep in bed, trying to decide whether to murder her. As “The Church of the Good Thief” commences with the song “Blame,” we’re just 30 minutes later in the storyline, as he chooses to kill his brother instead, while his wife watches in terror. His children witness the slaying, neighbors hear the commotion, and the sailor is quickly arrested, tried, and sentenced to death. The remainder of this final album finds him alone in his prison cell, reflecting on his tragic life, communicating with the ghost of his captain and mentor from the first album, and attempting to make peace with his family and his God before his execution.
Hull intentionally created an album to close out this trilogy that sounds and feels as solitary as the conflicted emotions that the character is experiencing. “Both of the previous albums contained a lot of different settings, but my hope on this record was to have it sound like a man in a jail cell with just a guitar and a piano,” he says. “I wanted my voice to be used as a narrative during his isolation.” Hull spent last winter recording during his breaks from touring, and as with the first two Right Away, Great Captain! records (and the entire Manchester Orchestra catalog), teamed up with his longtime producer/collaborator Dan Hannon. The album was recorded in Hannon’s living room studio in Atlanta, and mixed by Hannon, Hull, another longtime studio collaborator, Brad Fisher; and Manchester Orchestra guitarist Robert McDowell at Echo Mountain Studios in Asheville, NC.
“The Church of the Good Thief” track list:
2. When I Met Death
3. I Am Aware
4. Old Again
5. Fur Stop Caring
6. I Wait For You
7. Barely Bit Me
8. Rotten Black Root
9. We Were Made Of Lightning
10. Memories From The End Pt. 1
11. Memories From The End Pt. 2
Right Away, Great Captain! tour dates:
July 11 — Chicago, IL — Subterranean
July 12 — Pontiac, MI — The Pike Room
July 13 — Akron, OH — Musica
July 15 — Pittsburgh, PA — Shadow Lounge
July 17 — Hoboken, NJ — Maxwell’s
July 18 — Hamden, CT — The Space
July 19 — Boston, MA — Brighton Music Hall
July 20 — Philadelphia, PA — North Star Bar
July 21 — Baltimore, MD — Ottobar
July 22 — Brooklyn, NY — Knitting Factory