IDLES – “Grounds”

IDLES – “Grounds”

In 2018, IDLES released their sophomore album Joy As An Act Of Resistance. It quickly became one of the most intensely beloved works from a young rock band in recent memory, and anticipation was high for whatever would arrive next. Back in March, they shared a new song called “Mr. Motivator,” and hinted at a new album on the horizon. Today, they’ve officially announced it: IDLES’ third album, Ultra Mono, will arrive at the end of September.

Ultra Mono supposedly boasts the same fiery and impassioned worldview IDLES are known for. A recurring concept is the “momentary acceptance of self,” which frontman Joe Talbot expands upon in an essay in the album packaging. The album was produced by Nick Launay and Adam Greenspan, with additional programming from Kenny Beats; apparently Ultra Mono was structured to feel like a hip-hop album. There’s also a song that features Jehnny Beth, with other contributions from Warren Ellis, David Yow, and Jamie Cullum. And since nobody’s going to be touring for a while still, IDLES are gearing up for the release with a handful of professionally filmed and livestreamed performances from a yet-to-be-announced “iconic studio” — more information about the shows is available here.

Along with the announcement, IDLES have shared another new single called “Grounds.” “We wanted to write a song that embodied self-belief, and gave us self-belief — a counter-punch to all the doubt we build up from all the noise we so easily let in,” Talbot said in a statement. “We wanted to make the sound of our own hearts’ marching band, armed with a jack hammer and a smile. We wanted to make the sound of our engine starting. So we did. Thank you.”

Based on the inspiration from rap albums, maybe “Grounds” signals some stylistic expansion on Ultra Mono. The song rides a monstrous, lurching beat, and has these little burbling laser sounds that flash up against some airstrike guitars. “Grounds” is also accompanied by a video directed by Rob French. Check it out below.


01 “War”
02 “Grounds”
03 “Mr. Motivator”
04 “Anxiety”
05 “Kill Them With Kindness”
06 “Model Village”
07 “Ne Touche Pas Moi (feat. Jehnny Beth)”
08 “Carcinogenic”
09 “Reigns”
10 “The Lover”
11 “A Hymn”
12 “Danke”


Ultra Mono is out 9/25 via Partisan.

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