A PERFECT CIRCLE will release its fourth album, "Eat The Elephant", on April 20 via BMG. The disc arrives following years of anticipation and speculation, which reached a fever pitch as the outfit helmed by Maynard James Keenan and Billy Howerdel launched their fall 2017 tour with the release of "The Doomed". The band then ushered in the new year with the debut of the contemplative song "Disillusioned".
"Although I'm extremely excited to finally be completing this album after a 14-year hiatus, I'm actually more excited that its intentional release date is serving a greater purpose," explains Keenan. "The 20th of April is Carina Round's birthday. She is a dear friend who is extremely difficult to shop for. Pressure off. Of course, I must also note that the potheads are gonna be thrilled that this album comes out on 4-20. May it serve as a glorious soundtrack to accompany all of the giggling and vexing sounds of nibbling and snacking. Fingers crossed, Cheech & Chong will be proud."
"Demos are these precious ideas that you love in their initial state," adds Howerdel. "Then you collaborate, invite other ideas, and watch them progress. That's the dynamics and growth of a great record. I feel we've made a great record."
Pre-orders for the 12-song album, which was co-produced by Dave Sardy (AUTOLUX, SLAYER), are available now nand come with instant digital downloads of "TalkTalk", "Disillusioned" and "The Doomed". "Eat The Elephant" is being released in multiple formats, including digital, CD, double gatefold 180-gram vinyl and a box set with vinyl, CD and hi-res digital download as well as a prism and custom playing card deck. In advance of Record Store Day, a limited-edition independent retail exclusive version of the LP on white 180-gram vinyl with alternate cover will also be available.
The track listing for the disc is as follows:
01. Eat The Elephant
03. The Contrarian
04. The Doomed
05. So Long, And Thanks For All The Fish
07. By And Down The River
12. Get The Lead Out
The song " TalkTalk" can be streamed below.
The band's lineup remains unchanged from 2013. Joining Keenan and Howerdel once again are James Iha on rhythm guitar, Matt McJunkins on bass and Jeff Friedl on drums.
Howerdel told Razor 94.7 about A PERFECT CIRCLE's songwriting process: "Typically, I'll start an idea at home, kind of in isolation, and just kind of work on it until I don't hate it anymore. And then send it over to Maynard, see if he finds anything compelling about it. He'll kind of say 'yay' or 'nay' and find something he latches on to. And he'll throw down a scat vocal — syllables and a vocal melody idea, and it helps me move the song forward from there. And then if it's enough, then he starts working on lyrics, so he does all the lyrics and melodies and orchestrates the backups and all that. And then I concentrate on making the music. So that's kind of the back-and-forth conversation that we have musically."
Howerdel, who helmed all of A PERFECT CIRCLE's previous albums, explained his decision to enlist an outside producer for the new disc. "I wanted to bring a producer on in this record, just to take the musician's role more than the engineer-slash-producer-slash, you know, looking at budgets and the whole thing," he said. "And it let me, I think, hone in and see a twenty-thousand-foot view of these songs in a way that I've not been able to do in the past."
Howerdel is excited for fans to hear A PERFECT CIRCLE's next album, telling Razor 94.7: "I've said this before, so I'm being a little redundant: I can talk you out of anything, really, and I can talk you out of listening to our music or anything I've ever done, but I would say this record is some of the best songs we've ever done, and certainly some of the favorite things I've ever heard Maynard sing."
Photo credit: Tim Cadiente