Photo by Ray Concepcion
Titus Andronicus will return this year with a new album called A Productive Cough. Due out March 2nd via Merge, the seven-track effort is a noted departure from the sprawling rock opera of the band’s last record, 2015’s The Most Lamentable Tragedy.
Recorded at New Paltz, New York’s Marcata Recordings with producer Kevin McMahon, A Productive Cough eschews the “punk rock anthems” of Titus’ past albums to focus on spacious ballads. Singer-songwriter and frontman Patrick Stickles brought in 21 musicians to help with his newly expansive sound, including pianist Rick Steph (Cat Power, Hank Williams Jr.), cellist Jane Scarpantoni (R.E.M., Lou Reed), and Brooklyn singer Megg Farrell. The resulting effort puts the focus on the orchestral flourishes that have long hid in the background of the band’s music.
Which is why despite its lack of chorus, the eight-minute “Number One (In New York” makes for the perfect lead single for the record. The song is one 64-bar verse that builds on the back of swelling piano and saxophone towards a gang-chorus ending surrounded by ringing bells. “Yes, I’ve been everywhere, but everywhere that I’ve been/ I’ve been out of my element, even in my own skin,” goes the outro. “And I can’t begin to think what I’d tell people back home/ So I tell it to the microphone.”
Check out the track via its Ray Concepcion-directed video below.
The video also serves as a trailer of sorts to a 60-minute making-of documentary that will be released February 26th. More clips from the doc will be revealed over the coming weeks at the album’s website, where you can also find an interview with Stickles about what went into the creation of A Productive Cough.
Pre-orders for the album are going on now. In addition to all standard formats, there’s a “Peak Vinyl” limited-edition pressing on marbled blue-gray wax that includes a 7-inch featuring the band’s nine-minute reimagining of Bob Dylan’s “(I’m) Like a Rolling Stone”. The track is only otherwise available on CD or digitally.
A Productive Cough Artwork:
A Productive Cough Tracklist:
01. Number One (In New York)
02. Real Talk
03. Above the Bodega (Local Business)
04. Crass Tattoo
05. (I’m) Like a Rolling Stone
06. Home Alone
07. Mass Transit Madness (Goin’ Loco’)
Stickles will tour behind A Productive Cough, but not with his usual full band. Instead, the shows will feature just him and pianist Alex Molini doing an intimate “acoustic” set. Pile’s Rick Maguire will provide support for the 31-date trek, and you can find the complete schedule below.
Titus Andronicus 2018 Tour Dates:
03/07 – Kingston, NY @ BSP Kingston
03/08 – Boston, MA @ The Sinclair
03/09 – Providence, RI @ AS220
03/10 – Burlington, VT @ Arts Riot
03/11 – Montreal, QC @ Bar Le Ritz
03/13 – Toronto, ON @ Great Hall
03/14 – Detroit, MI @ El Club
03/15 – Chicago, IL @ Subterranean
03/16 – Madison, WI @ The Frequency
03/17 – St. Paul, MN @ Turf Club
03/18 – Omaha, NE @ Slowdown
03/19 – Denver, CO @ Globe Hall
03/20 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Urban Lounge
03/22 – Boise, ID @ Treefort Festival
03/23 – Seattle, WA @ Crocodile
03/24 – Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios
03/27 – Sonoma, CA @ Gundlach Bundschu Winery
03/28 – San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel
03/29 – Santa Cruz, CA @ Crepe Place
03/31 – Los Angeles, CA @ Bootleg Theater
04/02 – San Diego, CA @ Soda Bar
04/03 – Phoenix, AZ @ Valley Bar
04/06 – Ft. Worth, TX @ Ridglea Room
04/07 – Austin, TX @ Barracuda
04/08 – Houston, TX @ White Oak Music Hall
04/10 – Birmingham, AL @ Saturn
04/11 – Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade
04/12 – Durham, NC @ The Pinhook
04/13 – Washington, DC @ Rock and Roll Hotel
04/14 – Philadelphia, PA @ UArts Black Box
04/15 – Brooklyn, NY @ Murmrr Ballroom