Cullen Omori Announces New Album, Shares Video for New Song “Happiness Reigns” | Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Cullen Omori Announces New Album, Shares Video for New Song “Happiness Reigns”

The Diet Due Out August 17 via Sub Pop

Jun 07, 2018 Cullen Omori Bookmark and Share

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Former Smith Westerns frontman and singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Cullen Omori has announced a new album, The Diet, and shared a video for its new single, “Happiness Reigns.” The Diet is due out August 17 via Sub Pop. Its opening track, “Four Years,” was previously shared as a single back in April. Check out the “Happiness Reigns” video below, followed by the album’s tracklist and cover art, as well as his upcoming tour dates.

The Diet is Omori’s sophomore solo album, the follow-up to 2016’s New Misery. Sarah Strunin directed the “Happiness Reigns” video, which stars Paige Elkington.

The song was inspired by Omori’s current girlfriend. As Omori explains in a press release: “Seldom are songs actually about the women in my life, but when I choose to write them I try to act in conspiracy with my ‘muse.’ On ‘Happiness Reigns,’ I was consciously trying to prevent the song from lyrically falling into this one-way ode to an idolized muse. Of course some of my favorite artists like T-Rex or John Cale have albums chock full of them but my intention was never to be a rock classicist or to make something that was an extension of my influences. So I had her write it with me. If I was going to write this about someone, even in vague terms, I thought it would be interesting to intertwine their perception of themselves and of our relationship.”

Omori had this to say about the album as a whole and its title: “No one died, I didn’t get a severe physical injury, but emotionally it was a lot to take on. I named the album The Diet because to go on a diet, you cut back on certain things and regulate your intake of others. The idea that you can do that means you must have a surplus of whatever you’re trying to limit. I was so emotionally and spiritually drained, and my only surplus was a bunch of negative feelings and a lot of self-loathing. I tried to limit and confront those feelings in ways that I felt were productive. A big part of that was suppressing the obstructive, unnecessary minutiae that comes with being, or rather trying to be, a ‘professional musician,’ and beginning to write music with no pretense again.”

The album was recorded in Los Angeles after Omori relocated there from Chicago in 2016. Like his big life change, he also wanted to change things up musically. “On this record,” says Omori in the press release, “I was like, ‘I want a break with the convention that I had steadily been building since releasing music as a teenager.’ Whereas on New Misery I was locked in a room with a producer for a month tinkering away, this time around I wanted the sessions to be a revolving door of musicians: different people, different aesthetics. I wanted to open up, even though all these terrible things have happened to me. I pushed against my inner nature by actively pursuing collaborators. The outcome, funnily enough, is that the songs turned out to be arguably some of the most accessible I’ve ever written.”

The Diet Tracklist:

1. Four Years
2. Borderline Friends
3. All By Yourself
4. Happiness Reigns
5. Master Eyes
6. Quiet Girl
7. Black Rainbow
8. Natural Woman
9. Millennial Geishas
10. Last Line
11. Queen
12. A Real You

Cullen Omori Tour Dates:

Jul. 10 - Boston, MA - Royale * [Sold Out]
Jul. 12 - New York, NY - Gramercy Theatre * [Sold Out]
Jul. 13 - New York, NY - Irving Plaza * [Sold Out]
Jul. 15 - Seattle, WA - Neptune * [Sold Out]
Jul. 16 - Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom *
Jul. 18 - San Francisco, CA - August Hall * [Sold Out]
Jul. 19 - Los Angeles, CA - The Mayan *

* w/ The Pillows & Noodles

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