In the spring of 2013, Baltimore-based art-pop band New God, lead by brothers Kenny and Curt Tompkins, began crafting songs for their sophomore LP, Firework. After a family of skunks invaded and sprayed their studio in the mountains of western Maryland, the brothers jumped ship and headed downstate, where cheap recording space proved much harder to come by.
One warm night in June, while exploring their new surroundings, they stumbled upon an abandoned racquetball court, where they sat and sang in harmony for several hours. With the long-booming decay and natural reverb that only an empty gymnasium or stone room can provide (think Mountain Man's Made the Harbor), the space naturally shaped songs like the album-opening title track and "Dumb." For several weeks they returned to the court each night to write and record, occasionally retreating to a near-by soccer field to work out ideas under the stars.
Sessions continued in Baltimore throughout the summer of 2013, and by early fall they had completed a large collection of songs that would eventually be boiled down to the lean eight tracks found on Firework. The album is a slight departure from the sugar-rush fuzz-pop of their debut, 2012’s polished lo-fi Motorcar, but maintains the stylized production values, thick harmony vocals and sun-soaked melodies that originally won them so many Beach Boys comparisons.
Firework will be released digitally and on vinyl and CD by Yellow K Records on July 29, 2014. Pre-order items are now available for purchase at the Yellow K online store, including a "Deluxe Edition" Coke bottle clear vinyl, which is limited to 50 copies, and comes with a custom-made "Lovers Playing Sports" coloring book, crayons, and a signed tour poster.
7.14 Joe's Record Paradise (in-store) (Silver Spring, MD)
7.17 The Bowery Ballroom (New York, NY) #
7.18 Bourbon and Branch (Philadelphia, PA)
7.20 High Dive (Denver, CO) *
7.21 Kilby Court (Salt Lake City, UT ) *
7.22 Mississippi Studios (Portland, OR) *
7.24 Sophia's (Davis, CA) *
7.26 The Hotel Utah (San Francisco, CA) *
7.27 Silver Lake Lounge (Los Angeles, CA) *
8.02 Max Canada (Athens, GA)
8.07 Club K (Baltimore, MD)
8.08 Cafe Nola (Frederick, MD)
8.14 123 Pleasant Street (Morgantown, WV)
8.15 Dante's (Frostburg, MD)
* w/ Cotton Jones
# w/ Circa Survive