Fat Possum Records is excited to release the Walkmen’s latest album Heaven today, May 29. To celebrate the release, the Walkmen will play a rare, intimate hometown show at the Bowery Ballroom on Wednesday, June 6th at 9pm EST. The band has partnered with Spotify to provide a worldwide live stream of the concert, filmed by La Blogotheque, creators of the much-lauded “Take Away Show.” Starting today, New York City’s independent music retailer Other Music will exclusively provide the first 150 purchasers of Heaven with a ticket to the Bowery Ballroom performance. The remaining tickets will be made available for sale to the public via Bowery Presents on Friday, June 1st. Prior to the Bowery show, The Walkmen will perform on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon on Tuesday, June 5th.
Last week, NPR chose Heaven to be included in its much sought-after First Listen program. For one week, the album was streamed in its entirety via NPR.org, and the producers there remarked that Heaven finds the band “[continuing] to refine and mature its increasingly stately, deliberately paced sound.” Stereogum praised the record listing it as the #2 ‘Album Of The Year So Far’ and noting “Heaven is the elegant, understated, utterly gorgeous new album from the Walkmen, and it may well be their best.”
Heaven is the band’s sixth and was produced by Phil Ek (Fleet Foxes, Shins, Band of Horses) in Seattle. The Walkmen just celebrated their 10th anniversary and are still comprised of the same members that started the group in 2001 – drummer Matt Barrick, multi-instrumentalist Pete Bauer, singer Hamilton Leithauser, guitarist Paul Maroon and bassist Walter Martin. The Fleet Foxes’ Robin Pecknold sings harmonies on two songs on the record.
When describing Heaven, Leithauser portrays a band hitting maturity, comfortable in its mastery, after a decade together. “The detachment you can feel throughout our younger records is gone. We felt like it was time to make a bigger, more generous statement.”
It’s been 10 years since the Walkmen made their debut album, Everybody Who Pretended To Like Me Is Gone. Ten years since they mixed the lovingly recorded analogue tapes down to the cheapest CD burner they could find. Ten years since Leithauser snapped Maroon’s arm in a celebratory wrestling match. Ten years since critics attached them to a New York scene they never wanted any part of. In the spring of 2011, the band played a series of 10th anniversary shows that demonstrated how far they have outstripped their peers: two sets over two hours, no filler, rapturously received. In contrast, fellow graduates from New York’s celebrated rock revival class of ’02 have burned out or faded from view.
Heaven is a definitive statement of purpose and commitment, from a band at the peak of its powers that is finally winning the recognition it deserves.
The Walkmen Tour Dates:
6/6 – Bowery Ballroom – New York, NY
6/27 – WFPK Waterfront Wednesdays – Louisville, KY
6/28 – Plush – St. Louis, MO
6/29 – Summerfest – Milwaukee, WI
6/30 – First Avenue – Minneapolis, MN
7/5 – Pioneer Park – Salt Lake City, UT
7/20 – Deer Lake Park – Burnaby, BC %
7/21 – White River Amphitheatre – Auburn, WA %
7/22 – Edgefield – Troutdale, OR %
7/25 – Red Rocks Amphitheatre – Morrison, CO %
7/29 – The Lawn @ White River State Park – Indianapolis, IN
7/30 – Jacobs Pavilion – Cleveland, OH %
7/31 – Fox Theatre – Detroit, MI %
8/2 – Molson Canadian Amphitheatre – Toronto, ON %
8/3 – Osheaga Festival – Montreal, QC
8/5 – Lollapalooza – Chicago, IL
8/10-12 – Outside Lands – San Francisco, CA
% – w/ Florence & The Machine