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My Morning Jacket detail new album, Circuital

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We reset our ears when we sat down to listen to My Morning Jacket’s Evil Urges almost three years ago, and while we were sort of blown away by what we heard, it looks as though Jim James & Co. wanted to do a reboot of their own when they started sessions for their sixth “studio” album.

Rolling Stone reports that the band abandoned the pricey New York studios they used for 2008’s Evil Urges and relocated to the gym of a Louisville, Ky. church to record Circuital, which James is calling “the most live record [MMJ] has ever done.” You can reportedly hear the sound of chirping birds and passing cars on a few tracks, and while the group did record live to 24-track-tape on the effort, what’s also interesting is the way the frontman motivated his band to set the mood sonically.

“I want it to sound like we’re Cuban or Cambodian kids wearing berets and walking through an alley,” he reportedly told the band before they recorded “Holdin’ On To Black Metal”, “[then] we stumble upon this band, and it explodes into this crazy sing-along.”  That type of inspiration is said to have resulted in a record that “feels more stylistically consistent” than Evil Urges and is littered with “trippy keyboards, twisted pop hooks, and fuzzed-out guitar attacks.”

Guitarist Carl Broemel – who decided to improvise his guitar solos instead of composing them beforehand for this album – says that Circuital feels like the band has taken “a couple steps forward” in terms of it’s overall sound. Mass female vocals, horns, and additional vocal overdubs that James recorded in his home are said to have also made the tape and at least two of the album’s songs – “Wonderful” and “Out Of My System” – were supposed to be performed by the Muppets as part of a Gorillaz-style show that would have MMJ playing behind a curtain. Strange for sure, but what would you expect anything else from a guy with his own Crème Brulee blog?

Circuital doesn’t have a release date yet, but you can hope to see some new songs live when My Morning Jacket hit the summer festival circuit starting with an appearance at The Hangout Festival in Gulf Shores, Ala. On May 20th. You can find all confirmed performances below.

My Morning Jacket 2011 Tour Dates:
04/17 – Lexington, KY @ Memorial Coliseum at University of Kentucky
05/20-22 – Gulf Shores, AL @ Hangout Festival
06/02-05 – Ozark, AR @ Wakarusa Festival
06/02-05 – Hunter Mountain, NY @ Mountain Jam
06/09-12 – Manchester, TN @ Bonnaroo Music Festival
06/30-07/03 – Quincy, CA @ High Sierra Festival

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