Kevin Morby Announces New Religion-Themed Concept Album, Shares Video for New Song “No Halo” | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Monday, June 1st, 2020  

Kevin Morby Announces New Religion-Themed Concept Album, Shares Video for New Song “No Halo”

Oh My God Due Out April 26 via Dead Oceans

Feb 27, 2019 Photography by Barrett Emke
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Kevin Morby has announced a new album, Oh My God, and shared a video for its first single, "No Halo." Oh My God, which is billed as "his first true concept-album" and tackles religion, is due out April 26 via Dead Oceans. Chris Good directed the "No Halo" video, which starts with Morby at a restaurant, but gets weirder, darker, and more religious as it progresses. Below is the "No Halo" video, followed by the album's tracklist and cover art, as well as Morby's upcoming tour dates.

Morby released two excellent albums in back-to-back years: Singing Saw in 2016 and City Music in 2017, both via Dead Oceans, but then took a break from releasing a new album in 2018. Previous collaborator Sam Cohen produced the album in his Brooklyn studio. It started as a four-day recording session, but soon blossomed into something more ambitious than just making another album like his last two.

"Sam suggested that we make songs that sound like sonic pop-art that only have a few colors, like a Keith Haring piece," Morby says in a press release. "My other records had tons of colors, so we decided to keep this stark, like a painting that's black-and-white with one vibrant blue."

The press release describes the album like this: "Throughout his past work, Morby has noticed the ubiquity of an apparent religious theme. Though not identifying as 'religious' in the slightest, Morby recognizes in himself a somewhat spiritual being with a secular attitude towards the soulful. And so, in an effort to tackle that notion head-on and once-and-for-all, he sat down in his form of church—on planes and in beds—and wrote what would become his first true concept-album. If Singing Saw was Kevin's LA record, and City Music was his ode to New York City, then Oh My God lives in the sky, above the weather, both nowhere and everywhere at once."

Morby further elaborates in the press release: "Religion is around all of us. It's a universal language and there is profound beauty in it. I've found it a useful tool within songwriting, as it's something everyone can relate to on some level. There are religious themes or imagery in a lot of what I've done, so I wanted to get all of that out and speak only that language for a whole record. It's not a born-again thing; it's more that 'oh my god' is such a profound statement we all use multiple times a day and means so many different things. It's not about an actual god but a perceived one, and it's an outsider's view of the human experience in terms of religion."

Summing up the experience of recording Oh My God, Morby says: "This one feels full circle, my most realized record yet. It's a cohesive piece; all the songs fit under the umbrella of this religious theme. I was able to write and record the album I wanted to make. It's one of those marks of a life: this is why I slept on floors for seven years. I've now gotten the keys to my own little kingdom, and I'm devoting so much of my life to music that I just want to keep it interesting. At the end of the day, the only thing I don't want is to be bored. If someone wants to get in my face about writing a non-religious religious record? Thank god. That's all I gotta say."

Read our 2017 interview with Kevin Morby on City Music.

Also read our 2017 Track-by-Track interview with Morby on City Music.

Read our review of Singing Saw and check out our 2016 interview with Morby about Singing Saw.

Oh My God Tracklist:

1. Oh My God
2. No Halo
3. Nothing Sacred / All Things Wild
4. OMG Rock n Roll
5. Seven Devils
6. Hail Mary
7. Piss River
8. Savannah
9. Storm (Beneath The Weather)
10. Congratulations
11. I Want To Be Clean
12. Sing A Glad Song
13. Ballad Of Faye
14. O Behold

Kevin Morby Tour Dates:

Sat. Mar. 2, 2019 - Phoenix, AZ @ M3F Fest
Wed. May 8, 2019 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Theatre at Ace Hotel *
Fri. May 10, 2019 - Santa Cruz, CA @ The Catalyst (Live in the Atrium) *
Sat. May 11, 2019 - San Francisco, CA @ The Fillmore *
Mon. May 13, 2019 - Portland, OR @ Crystal Ballroom *
Tue. May 14, 2019 - Seattle, WA @ The Showbox *
Wed. May 15, 2019 - Vancouver, BC @ Imperial Vancouver *
Fri. May 17, 2019 - Salt Lake City, UT @ The State Room *
Sat. May 18, 2019 - Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theater *
Fri. May 31, 2019 - New York, NY @ Town Hall *
Sat. June 1, 2019 - Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club *
Sun. June 2, 2019 - Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer *
Mon. June 3, 2019 - Boston, MA @ The Sinclair *
Wed. June 5, 2019 - Toronto, ON @ The Opera House *
Thu. June 6, 2019 - Ann Arbor, MI @ The Ark *
Fri. June 7, 2019 - Chicago, IL @ Thalia Hall *
Sat. June 8, 2019 - Chicago, IL @ Thalia Hall *
Fri. June 14 - Brussels, BE @ AB *
Sat. June 15 - Berlin, DE @ Festsaal Kreuzberg *
Sun. June 16 - Mannheim, DE @ Maifield Derby *
Mon. June 17 - Amsterdam, NL @ Paradiso *
Wed. June 19 - London, UK @ O2 Sheperds Bush Empire *
Thu. June 20 - Paris, FR @ Le Cabaret Sauvage *
Sat. June 22 - Hamburg, DE @ Knust *
Sun. June 23 - Copenhagen, DK @ Vega *
Mon. June 24 - Aarhus, DK @ Voxhall *
Wed. June 26 - Helsinki, FI @ Tavastia *
Fri. Jun 28, 2019 - Stockholm, Sweden @ Debaser/Bar Brooklyn (solo)
Sat. Jun 29, 2019 - Gothenburg, Sweden @ Pustervik (solo)
Sun. Jun 30, 2019 -  Oslo, Norway @ John Dee (solo)
Mon. Jul 1, 2019 -  Tromsø, Norway @ Blårock Café (solo)
Tue. Jul 2, 2019 - Bergen, Norway @ Landmark (solo)
Wed Jul 3, 2019 - Malmö, Sweden @ Babel (solo)
Fri. Jul 5, 2019 - Vilanova i la Geltrú, Spain @ Vida Festival (solo)
Sat. Jul 6, 2019 - Madrid, Spain @ Copérnico (solo)
Sun. Jul 7, 2019 - Lisbon, Portugal @ São Luiz Teatro Municipal (solo)
Mon. Jul 8, 2019 - Braga, Portugal @ Gnration (solo)
Wed. Jul 10, 2019 - Biarritz, France @ La Côte des Basques (solo)
Thu. Jul 11, 2019 - Bordeaux, France @ Rock School Barbey (solo)
Fri. Jul 12, 2019 - Toulouse, France @ Le Théatre de Garonne (solo)
Sun. Jul 14, 2019 - Roubaix, France @ La Cave aux Poetes (solo)
Wed. Jul 17, 2019 - Istanbul, Turkey @ IKSV (solo)
Fri. Jul 19, 2019 - Dublin, Ireland @ The Grand Social (solo)
 
* w/ Sam Cohen

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