Ever since 1996, the bugged-out Athens, Georgia adventure-pop project of Montreal has been putting out a whole lot of music. Working with a long procession of collaborators, mastermind Kevin Barnes has gone through a ton of different eras and guises. And today, we’re getting a new one, sort of. Early next year, of Montreal will return with a new album called UR FUN. And today, Barnes has dropped “Peace To All Freaks,” the synthy and giddy lead single.
As with the last of Montreal album, 2018’s White Is Relic/Irrealis Mood, UR FUN is inspired by Barnes’ relationship with his girlfriend, Locate S,1’s Christina Schneider. (She shows up on one song.) Recently, Barnes has been performing out of character for the first time in a long time, ditching the makeup and the theatrics and playing some version of his own stripped-down self. But he still likes playing with pop and artifice, and a press release specifically cites Janet Jackson and Cyndi Lauper as inspirations for the bleepy, uptempo dance-party sound of UR FUN.
“Peace To All Freaks” is our first taste of that sound, and it’s definitely bright and fast and clean. Keyboards glimmer and twinkle, reaching hard for that John Hughes soundtrack vibe, while Barnes sighs and yelps about mutual support. Below, listen to Peace To All Freaks and check out the UR FUN tracklist.
01 “Peace To All Freaks”
03 “Get God’s Attention By Being An Atheist”
04 “Gypsy That Remains” (Feat. Locate S,1)
05 “You’ve Had Me Everywhere”
06 “Carmillas Of Love”
07 “Don’t Let Me Die In America”
08 “St. Sebastian”
09 “Deliberate Self-Harm Ha Ha”
10 “20th Century Schizofriendic Revengoid-man”
UR FUN is out 1/17 on Polyvinyl.