By Laura Turnbull | Cover Image: Pooneh Ghana
The new Fontaines D.C. album, ‘A Hero’s Death’, was born on the road, riffs and lyrics drafted on the tour bus as the band travelled across America and Europe promoting their debut ‘Dogrel’ last year. With the new album due out next month, we’re finally getting to hear the music that was pulled together in those relentless and jet-lagged journeyings, and the weary toll of the road is evident.
“I don’t belong to anyone/I don’t wanna belong to anyone“, frontman Chatten repeats doggedly in ‘I Don’t Belong’, the opening single from ‘A Hero’s Death’, a teaser from the upcoming album which the band shared earlier this week. The ‘I’m gonna be big’ swagger of songs past has developed into something closer to jaded introspection, but the lines lack none of Fontaines’ usual defiance.
“I was consumed by the need to write something else to alleviate the fear that I would never be able to do it again,” Chatten explains, describing the troubled writing process behind the tracks on ‘A Hero’s Death’. Second Album Syndrome say hi. The tongue-in-cheek humour of the album’s title is a nod to that sense of expectation, the pressure to live up to a previous release coupled with the desire to test out new sounds. Success can only mean a set-up for failure when anthem-demanding fans are involved, but Fontaines D.C., in characteristically gutsy style, are owning that anxiety. ‘I Don’t Belong’ is a stubborn and rousing statement-of-intent. It’s a glass raised to wilful detachment from a rat-race world, and a demonstration of a band determined to do their own thing.
Give your eyes some stunning Irish scenery while listening to the new single. Watch Grian Chatten master multi-tasking, swimming and singing in the band-directed video for ‘I Don’t Belong’:
‘A Hero’s Death’ is due for release on July 31st via Partisan.