Torres – “Collect”
Back in 2021, the musician Mackenzie Scott — better known as Torres — made what felt like a huge level-up with her fifth full-length Thirstier, which we named our Album Of The Week. Today, she’s announcing its follow-up — it’s called What an enormous room and it will be released on January 26. She recorded it at Stadium Heights Sound in Durham, NC, and produced it alongside Sarah Jaffe. Lead single “Collect” is glowering and sharp and builds to a pair of crunchy, repeated hooks: “Did I hit a nerve?,” “I’m here to collect.”
Julien Baker wrote the album’s official biography, and in it she writes: “What I can say about TORRES is I think the music comes from a convicted place. Not convicted meaning a person is narrowly and foolishly committed to an ideal, or unshakably convinced of themselves, or a zealot, or stubborn.”
Watch a video for “Collect,” directed by Dani Okon, below.
01 “Happy man’s shoes”
02 “Life as we don’t know it”
03 “I got the fear”
04 “Wake to flowers”
05 “Ugly mystery”
07 “Artificial limits”
08 “Jerk into joy”
09 “Forever home”
10 “Songbird forever”
01/17 Cleveland, OH @ Grog Shop *
01/18 Chicago, IL @ Venue TBA
01/19 Columbus, OH @ A&R Music Bar *
01/20 Nashville, TN @ The Basement *
01/22 Atlanta, GA @ The Masquerade (Purgatory) *
01/23 Durham, NC @ Motorco *
01/24 Washington, DC @ The Atlantis *
01/25 Philadelphia, PA @ The Foundry *
01/26 Brooklyn, NY @ Elsewhere *
01/27 Cambridge, MA @ The Sinclair
02/02 Paris, FR @ Le Hasard Ludique
02/03 Bruges, BE @ Cactus Club
02/05 Amsterdam, NL @ Paradiso Upstairs
02/06 Cologne, DE @ Bumann & SOHN
02/07 Berlin, DE @ Privatclub
02/08 Munich, DE @ Milla
02/10 Baden, CH @ One of a Million Festival
02/12 Manchester, UK @ YES
02/13 Bristol, UK @ Strange Brew
02/14 London, UK @ Oslo
03/20 Denver, CO @ Larimer Lounge ^
03/22 Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court ^
03/23 Boise, ID @ Venue TBA
03/26 Seattle, WA @ Neumos ^
03/27 Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios ^
03/29 San Francisco, CA @ Cafe Du Nord ^
03/30 Los Angeles, CA @ Lodge Room ^
04/01 San Diego, CA @ Casbah ^
04/02 Phoenix, AZ @ Valley Bar ^
04/04 Dallas, TX @ Club Dada ^
04/05 Austin, TX @ The Parish ^
04/06 Houston, TX @ White Oak Music Hall (Upstairs) ^
* w/ Aisha Burns
^ w/ Liza Anne
Here is Baker’s full biography:
What I can say about TORRES is I think the music comes from a convicted place.
Not convicted meaning a person is narrowly and foolishly committed to an ideal, or unshakably convinced of themselves, or a zealot, or stubborn.
I mean dedicated, I mean: If TORRES’ music gets weird, gets brainy, gets funny, gets defiant, provokes, deliberately scandalizes, employs the crass to undermine the austere, courts lofty philosophical truth—it’s all done with the conviction of an artist with the (essential) belief in the worth of their task.
I think you can hear it in the songs, someone reaching, leaning over the boundary between known and not, probing the almighty.
After a decade and six studio albums and however many one-offs and tours and articles read and conversations had, the parts of this pursuit I’ve been able to observe are all marked by a dedication to creation that treats the act—ongoing—with as much preciousness as the evidence of the act that is left in a record.
The modes of being are different: heartbroken, broke, furious (right- and unrighteously), awestruck by love, compelled by desire. sometimes resigned to death, sometimes fascinated by and reverent of the future. Sometimes viscerally present, other times suspended in heady awareness, poised on a fulcrum of observation and participation in the phenomenon that aliveness is.
The tools are the same: instruments that growl and shriek and moan, a lyrical voice shouting, swooning, chuckling, snarling as the moment commands. TORRES’ music-making is conducted in a melodic vocabulary unique to itself—methods, equipment, circumstances shifting around the impulse to affirm the self within the world, to make art that bears all these little artifacts of the divine and of the real and show it to people and know it is valuable. I think that’s what Mackenzie’s music does. And I think it’s just incredibly good music to listen to.
– Julien Baker
What an enormous room is out 1/26 via Merge.