Indie rock living legends Yo La Tengo have been mighty productive this year despite living on lockdown, or maybe because of it. Back in July they started dropping one formless improvisational track per day for a week, which turned out to be a new EP called We Have Amnesia Sometimes. A couple weeks later they played some socially distanced concerts at MASS MoCA. And then a few weeks after that, the band announced another new EP set for release at the peak of “Autumn Sweater” season.
Originally conceived for use in Japanese artist Yoshitomo Nara’s LACMA exhibition last year, YLT’s upcoming Sleepless Night is a covers record featuring their takes on songs by the Byrds, Bob Dylan, the Flying Machine, the Delmore Brothers, and Ronnie Lane. But it also contains one original song called “Bleeding,” which they’re sharing today ahead of the EP’s release next month. It’s a spare and moody ballad that reminds me a bit of the quiet version of “Big Day Coming,” but with Ira Kaplan’s vocals turned down to a whisper.
Sleepless Night is out 10/9 on Matador. Pre-order it here.