At long last, the Dixie Chicks have returned to music.
The trio put out their last album Taking the Long Way in 2006, and now, they've announced its follow-up. Gaslighter, their eighth studio album, hits stores on May 1, and as a first preview, the iconic country pop mainstays have shared its title track. The single is the platonic ideal of a kiss-off, with the band harmonizing, "Gaslighter / Denier / Doing anything to get your ass farther / Gaslighter / Big timer / Repeating all of the mistakes of your father." It's also a certified banger, boasting one of the biggest, most delectable choruses in Dixie Chicks' history.
This fall, Maines went on the Spiritualgasm podcast and revealed that parts of the album were inspired by her divorce from actor Adrian Pasdar. "Our last album was the most personal and autobiographical we’ve ever been," she told the hosts. "And then this one is 10 times that.”
According to Maines, originally Gaslighter was supposed to be a "real easy, turn it in, get the money, be free agents,” covers album to get out of the band's contract with Sony. “But then my relationship fell apart, and I had a lot to say," she said. On the single, Maines holds no punches, "Swore that night til death do us part / But you lie lie lie lie lied / Hollywood welcomed you with open doors / No matter what they gave you you still wanted more."
Premiering the single on Beats 1 With Zane Lowe, Maines revealed that the single was the first song the band wrote with producer Jack Antonoff. She says, "We wrote with him and we’re like, 'He needs to produce it and this needs to be the sound for this album.' He blew us away, and it was such a fun song to start with."
The band's return to music is long-overdue. In 2003, after they first spoke out against the Iraq War and the Bush administration, there was a massive fallout that they almost didn't recover from. Even Taking the Long Way, which dealt with the controversy and criticism from fans and country radio, didn't get their career back on track, despite winning several Grammys. It will be interesting to see how their new music will be received by the still-conservative world of country radio, which still apparently doesn't like the Dixie Chicks and is clearly dealing with longstanding misogyny issues. With a single as strong as this, they'll be hard to ignore