Ezra Furman has released the rousing new single “Lilac and Black” from her upcoming sixth album, All of Us Flames. Stream it below.
“Lilac and Black” is Furman’s empowering call to arms for the trans community, reflecting on the toll of their embattled existence while rallying for a unified front against cis bigots. “I try to keep count, try to guess the amount/ Who’ll make it through the coming year,” she sings solemnly, before launching defiantly into lyrics like, “The streets of this city’s what we’re asking for/ And we’ll take ’em if they’re not given.”
Furman’s uncompromising delivery allows her to triumph over her own personal trials, and she channels that determination into bringing others together behind the same defenses. In a statement, she shared, “I’ve started to think of us trans women as a kind of secret gang, scattered across the world, or that we could be that. So I wrote this theme song for us, and gave us some gang colors: lilac and black.”
“Unfortunately, being trans usually comes with some kind of threat to one’s well-being or even one’s life. The hostility toward us right now is intense and the stakes are high,” Furman added. “This song is an expression of deep solidarity and willingness to defend our lives. It’s also about how being trans so often feels like a war we never asked for. On top of the seemingly endless social stigma and barriers to our general thriving, various governments have now set in motion a concerted movement to virtually outlaw healthy trans existence. Let it be known: We demand safety, resources, and dignity, and we are ready to fight for our lives and the lives of others.”
Expect Furman to wave the “Lilac and Black” banner throughout her extensive 2022 tour, which includes North American, European, and UK legs running through November. She’s also set to open for Jack White on select dates in August and will appear at Delaware’s Firefly Festival in September. Grab your seats via Ticketmaster.
All of Us Flames arrives on August 26th via ANTI-/Bella Union and has been preceded so far by “Point Me Toward the Real,” “Book of Our Names,” and “Forever in Sunset.” It is considered the third installment of a trilogy alongside 2018’s Transangelic Exodus and 2019’s Twelve Nudes. Pre-orders are ongoing.