Madeline Kenney’s first album, the Toro Y Moi-produced Night Night at the First Landing, was an introspective but open-hearted release of enormous promise, showcasing the singer’s captivating voice and knack for a razor-sharp lyric. If that record was all promise, her just-announced follow-up, Perfect Shapes, seems likely to be the realization of that potential.
Produced by Jenn Wasner of Wye Oak, the album is due to arrive on October 5th via Carpark Records. It was recorded in Durham, North Carolina in the first young weeks of 2018, a mere five months after the release of Kenney’s debut. A press release describes the process as highly collaborative, noting that both Kenney and Wasner play multiple instruments on the effort’s 10 tracks.
Perfect Shapes is said to address “femininity, societal pressures, expectation, value and self-worth.” That makes the record sound both potent and timely, as all those messy, complicated issues are filtered through a genre Kenney calls “twang-haze” — an appealing blend of fuzzy guitar, cathartic vocals, and wordplay that cuts like a knife. Wasner said in a statement that when she first heard the music that became Perfect Shapes, she “understood what it felt like to really have a piece of art speak directly to you.” She elaborated,
“Hearing her words felt like someone whispering in my ear the contents of my own mind… This was my first time producing music other than my own, and it was one of the only times I’ve ever experienced working exclusively with women. And it was a creative experience unlike any I’ve ever had.”
Check out the pop-forward first single, “Cut Me Off”, below — and if you’re watching from a cubicle, be prepared to fight the desire to tap-dance on a breakroom table.
Pre-orders for Perfect Shapes are on-going, and you can peep the cover art and tracklist below.
Perfect Shapes Artwork:
Perfect Shapes Tracklist:
02. Bad Idea
03. Cut Me Off
04. No Weekend
06. The Flavor of the Fruit Tree
07. I Went Home
08. Perfect Shapes
09. Your Art
10. Always Around Me
Kenney is currently on the road with Wye Oak, and her tour schedule can be found below.
Madeline Kenney 2018 Tour Dates:
07/11 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Metro Music Hall *
07/12 – Boise, ID @ Neurolux Lounge *
07/13 – Portland, OR @ Revolution Music Hall *
07/14 – Vancouver, BC @ The Biltmore Cabaret *
07/15 – Seattle, WA @ Neumos *
07/17 – San Francisco, CA @ The Independent *
07/18 – Oakland, CA @ Starline Social Club *
07/19 – Los Angeles, CA @ Lodge Room *
07/20 – San Diego, CA @ Soda Bar *
07/21 – Phoenix, AZ @ The Crescent Ballroom *
07/23 – Santa Fe, NM @ Meow Wolf *
07/24 – El Paso, TX @ Lowbrow Palace *
07/27 – Birmingham, AL @ Saturn *
* = w/ Wye Oak