Photo via James Blake on Instagram
James Blake, man of understatement, showed up on Annie Mac's BBC Radio 1 show tonight to discuss what he's been doing over the past few years: "I made a record. I guess that's the biggest thing I've done since then."
And now we're about to get it. In addition to playing two new tracks, "Radio Silence" and "I Need a Forest Fire," he announced that the album is out tonight at midnight BST (7 PM EST). As previously announced, it's called The Colour in Anything. It was recorded in London and in part with Rick Rubin at Shangri La in California, where he found it was nice "to let someone else man the controls for a little bit."
He also discussed the songs a bit, explaining that "Radio Silence" was originally supposed to be the title track of the album. He's performed it live before. Then the album title changed, and "it kind of became a running joke that there had been so much radio silence from me."
Meanwhile, "I Need a Forest Fire" features Justin Vernon of Bon Iver, who Blake has worked with in the past under the name Fall Creek Boys Choir. "He just sings gold, and it comes out quickly and effortlessly, and that's the kind of person he is," Blake said of the collaboration.
In the interview with Annie Mac, he also discusses visual artist Quentin Blake (no relation), who designed the album's accompanying art and billboards, noting "my mum, she's a graphic designer, she got me into him." Annie Mac also asked James Blake about his recent appearance on Beyoncé's album Lemonade, about which he said "she's wonderful, as wonderful in person as I'd hoped that she'd be," adding "I just sang the right thing, I don't know. I didn't know what was going to end up happening to it."
And the rest, well, the rest is that we get a new James Blake album in about four hours. The takeaway? "I guess we grow another few years older and hopefully another a little bit wiser and learn and document and it's my life that's changed not the process necessarily." Well put, James.
Check out the songs below, and stream "I Need a Forest Fire" on Spotify.
UPDATE: James Blake has released the full tracklist on Instagram. It's 17 tracks long. Check it out below:
UPDATE 2: You can now stream both songs on YouTube, along with a third song, "My Willing Heart." Listen to them below:
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