Five studio albums, four EPs, a slew of singles, and countless shows later, David Bazan is officially going back to his roots. As he all but confirmed earlier this year, Phoenix, his first album as Pedro The Lion since 2004's Achilles Heel, will be out via Polyvinyl on January 18. The first single from the record, "Yellow Bike," is out this mornin, and you can watch its Ryan Lester-directed video at the top of the page.
The return to Pedro The Lion, ironically, means that Bazan is no longer writing songs by committee. As he did on the early PTL records, Bazan himself wrote every line, melody, and accompaniment on Phoenix. "I had abandoned my natural way of working in the hopes of creating space for a consistent band to write with... and it hadn’t worked," Bazan says in a press release. "So I got a rehearsal space, mic’d up drums, bass, and guitar, and really leaned into my original process again. It immediately felt like like home. Before long I realized it also felt like Pedro the Lion."
He went into the studio in Seattle this past summer with Erik Walters (Silver Torches) on guitar and Sean Lane (with whom Bazan released the collaborative album Rare Coins last year) on drums. Andy D. Park, who's worked with all three members of the new PTL lineup in the past, produced the record.
Follow Alex Robert Ross on Twitter.