Acclaimed artist Eleanor Friedberger will release her new album, Rebound, on Frenchkiss Records on May 4, 2018. The album’s first song, “In Between Stars,” which Eleanor calls an homage to 80’s dark goth pop, is out now.
In contrast to her 2016 lauded album New View, which Eleanor arranged and recorded with her touring band, Rebound was recorded mostly by Eleanor alone with assistance from producer Clemens Knieper. The resulting album is an entirely new sound for Eleanor, exchanging live instrumentation for programmed drums, a Juno synthesizer, and muted guitars, creating a sonic landscape where influences range from Stereolab and Suicide to Lena Platonos and Yellow Magic Orchestra.
In addition to a new sonic palette, Rebound takes significant inspiration from Eleanor’s time spent in Greece. Half-Greek herself, Eleanor frequently traveled to Greece to see family, but decided in 2016 to really immerse herself in the culture. She says: “I spent most of 2016 on the road, and I needed to keep that momentum going. I had always wanted to spend more time in Greece; take Greek lessons and get to know Athens better while hopefully writing some music. After November 8, 2016 I set that loose plan into motion. While friends back home were suddenly becoming politically activated for the first time, it was exciting to be living in a city where protest marches occur on a weekly, or sometimes daily basis. I assembled a band of Greek musicians, played a few shows, learned a few more Greek words, but didn’t get much writing done. It turned out to be more of a reconnaissance mission.
After a month in Athens I asked my friend, the Greek musician Σtella, “What’s one thing I have to do before I leave?” After some long and careful consideration she smiled and said, “you have to go to Rebound. It’s a time warp; kind of an 80s goth disco where everyone does the chicken dance; you’ll love it… but it’s only open on Saturdays after 3:00 AM.” Rebound proved to be a revelation in terms of finding the sound and energy for my fourth album. The club was very dark and despite the no smoking signs, like everywhere in Athens, it was very smoky. The “chicken dance” Stella mentioned was a solitary one. I copied the slouchy strut, moving back and forth in line, swinging my arms in time to the music that at first sounded like Joy Division or maybe The Cure, but never revealed itself– one could only assume it to be knock-off by an unknown Baltic band. It was alienating and exhilarating.”
Rebound is the incredible next step in a lauded, brilliant recording career by one of the most prolific, daring independent artists of our time. From her days spent in The Fiery Furnaces, creating melodically off-kilter, idiosyncratic mini-epics, to her three acclaimed previous solo albums, Eleanor Friedberger continues to create exactly what we need to hear when we need to hear it. Always anchored by her plaintive, velvety alto, and Dylan-esque lyrical treatises, Rebound is Eleanor at her very best, and a welcome addition to her rich, celebrated catalogue.
‘Rebound’ by ELEANOR FRIEDBERGER is to be released on Frenchkiss Records on May 4, 2018