Blitzen Trapper Announces New Album ‘Holy Smokes Future Jokes’ & Shares Single

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Blitzen Trapper announced a new album, Holy Smokes Future Jokes, due out on September 11 through Yep Roc Records. The Portland, Oregon outfit previewed the upcoming LP with the single, “Magical Thinking.”

Holy Smokes Future Jokes — the band’s Yep Roc debut and their first new studio album since 2017’s Wild And Reckless — explores what lies between life and death as well as the concept of reincarnation “and what it means to escape the cycle of birth and rebirth.” Blitzen Trapper frontman Eric Earley said in a statement. The liminal space between death and rebirth is known as Bardo. Earley drew inspiration for the album from George Saunders’ 2017 Lincoln in the Bardo and the Tibetan Book Of The Dead, also known as the Bardo Thodol.

“I became obsessed with it [the Bardo Thodol],” Earley said in a statement. “All the ideas contained in that book were speaking to me in a lot of different ways. The main theme that kept drawing me in when I was writing was what I call ‘cosmic humility. It’s the idea that humanity is not the center of the universe or even the center of our own universe here on earth. We’re not the most important thing.”

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Blitzen Trapper recorded Holy Smokes Future Jokes at Portland’s Long Play Recording with the help of producer and engineer Raymond Richards who also played keys, pedal steel and bass. Blitzen Trapper welcomed Michael Blake on keys, Luke Price on fiddle and Ben Latimer on saxophone along with backing vocalists Heather Woods Broderick and Haley Johnsen.

Check out lead single “Magical Thinking,” premiered by Spin, via a visualizer video below:

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Holy Smokes Future Jokes Tracklist:

  1. Baptismal
  2. Bardo’s Light (Ouija, Ouija)
  3. Don’t Let Me Run
  4. Magical Thinking
  5. Masonic Temple Microdose #1
  6. Requiem
  7. Holy Smokes Future Jokes
  8. Sons and Unwed Mothers
  9. Dead Billie Jean
  10. Hazy Morning
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