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Silversun Pickups (Photo by Claire Marie Vogel)
Silversun Pickups (Photo by Claire Marie Vogel)

Silversun Pickups to perform at RiverWorks


Mon, Apr 29th 2019 03:50 pm

Silversun Pickups, on the heels of announcing their awaited return with new album “Widow’s Weeds” (June 7, New Machine Recordings), confirmed new tour dates for June and July. The band will perform July 14 at Buffalo Riverworks.

Tickets will go on sale here at 10 a.m. Friday.

Widow’s Weeds,” Silversun Pickups’ fifth studio album, will be released via their own New Machine Recordings label. The band enlisted Butch Vig (Nirvana, Garbage, Smashing Pumpkins, Sonic Youth) to produce their latest, an extroverted and open album about rebirth and renewal. Lead singer Brian Aubert said, “This was the first album where we were open. We were exposed. I see how that can be scary to people, but for us we really thrived on that.”

“Widow’s Weeds” is now available to pre-order here, with lead single, “It Doesn’t Matter Why,” provided as an instant download. The band also shared the music video for “It Doesn’t Matter Why” which was directed by Suzie Vlcek. Watch it here. Watch behind the scenes footage of the band in the studio during the making of Widow’s Weeds here.

Bursting out of the Silverlake, California, music scene in the early 2000s, Silversun Pickups – lead singer Aubert, bassist Nikki Monninger, drummer Christopher Guanlao and keyboardist Joe Lester – have maintained their independence throughout a storied career. They released their first three albums on local label Dangerbird Records before founding their own label, New Machine Recordings, for the release of their most recent album, “Better Nature.” Now almost two decades into their career, they remain a vital and important rock band and have racked up 10 Top 20 hits on Billboard's alternative songs chart, as well as over a million records sold in the U.S.

Silversun Pickups have always considered their sonic density a source of pride, their four studio albums revealing additional sonic gifts with each subsequent spin. Their fifth album, “Widow's Weeds,” is no exception. The band members were in agreement with the album's starting point (the urgent synth-rocker "Neon Wound") and closer (the aggressive, throttling "We Are Chameleons"). The band admitted that everything in between, including how the rest of “Widow's Weeds” was sequenced and how the album unfolded, often surprised them.

To make sense of these ideas, Silversun Pickups enlisted producer Vig. He and mixer Billy Bush helped Silversun Pickups craft a confident, unrestrained album in which every instrument is clearly audible in the mix. Cure-like keyboards hold their own against riffs on "Neon Wound" and the spring-loaded "It Doesn't Matter Why."

In the end, recording with Vig surpassed the band members' already-high expectations.

"He really listens to each band member, and he puts a great value on each individual, and what they can add to the music," Monninger said. "It was very collaborative with him. He's such an easygoing person, and he put everybody at ease."

During this time, the band members were wrestling with challenges in their personal lives. Lester's father passed away. Aubert, meanwhile, found himself in an extremely dark place, for reasons he couldn't immediately explain.

"I didn't know how to get out of it," Aubert said. "Finally, I was just like, something big has to happen."

His solution was getting treatment and getting sober during the gap between recording sessions – a decision that immediately improved his mental health and creative outlook."

The record does have a mourning vibe, but it's not sad," he said. "It's change. It's growing up and moving on and letting go of things. And it's OK to be sad about those things and mourn them. It's actually healthy to do so and take the time to do it. At the end of the day, it's going to be much better and much more fulfilling when you get through it."

“Widow's Weeds” ends up being about rebirth and renewal. For Aubert, moving forward involves staying connected to his own self (and remembering to prioritize self-care) and being attuned to creative impulses when they arise. If that means going outside of his comfort zone, so be it,” Aubert said. "This album feels the most naked out of all of them."

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