Following acclaimed singles ‘Mere Slaughter’ and ‘Televangelist’, one of Birmingham’s most prolific bands of recent years, Mutes release their most raw, yet engrossing record to date. ‘…buried where you stand’, their upcoming 12-track fourth album, out on May 17th 2024.

Recorded almost entirely live as a three-piece at Megatone Studios with engineer Mark Gittins, for their fourth record the band stripped back the lavish technicolor method that defined their most recent albums – 2019’s Pareidolia and 2021’s Dreams of Being Cornered, and instead focused on the unfiltered immediacy found in their early work – whilst further finessing their ambiguous, genre-defying sonics. From the no-wave influenced ‘Mere Slaughter’, to the lilting psychedelia of ‘Perfumed Corpse’ and the ambient drones of ‘.cycles’, the band cover all this ground and more without compromising their own unique artistry.

Having played with the likes of Cloud Nothings, The Cribs, Omni, Battles, No Age and more, alongside their own headline shows around the country, Mutes have honed their ‘post-everything’ sound via their staunch work ethic; always with the end goal of creating an immersive album that flies in the face of the current climate’s ephemeral, single-centric culture.

“Our goal when writing and recording ‘…buried where you stand’ was to capture the essence of our live sound in the most honest manner possible – this meant all tracking in a room together with very little separation between instruments, and minimal overdubs. Our ‘Albini record’, if you will.

“Thematically, I have always tended to look inwards when writing. It is somewhat of a self-directed, existential manifesto – an attempt to recapture the parts of myself I felt lost; a distillation of the relentless, cacophonic internal monologue that results from juggling infinite choices and then facing bottomless consequences. I have not been inclined to seek lyrical inspiration in our country’s dire socio-political climate when there is so much inherent inadequacy in my own existence to be exorcised. Those themes being spiritual ambivalence, substance abuse and recovery, the human condition, fugue states, the pendulum-swing of living”, vocalist and lyricist James explains.

Ahead of the release of the album comes its next single Transparency on May 3rd 2024; a concentrated dose of intoxicating, angular krautrock. The first track on the album, with the rattle of a snare drum clearly audible amidst the caterwaulic opening stabs of guitar, the stage is set for the unadulterated sonics of ‘…buried where you stand’. Unrelenting, alternately-tuned guitars cut through like a scythe, adorned with surrealistic musings on the ephemeral nature of the human form via a single distorted vocal. As the song swoons to its gentle middle-sway, Mutes’ polyamorous nature becomes apparent. From filter-combed no-wave noise to country-influenced slide guitars to motorik, fuzzed-out bliss; Mutes adopt all this and everything in-between as they pursue their singular goal of remaining unrestrained.

Discussing the track, James says: “‘Transparency’ was one of the last songs written for the record, but it was immediately apparent that it would become the opening track – it has a sense of purpose that encapsulates our work ethic. One of my favourite ways of writing music is to make up a new guitar tuning to render myself unable to default to typical chord shapes, and ‘Transparency’ is one of many songs on the album conceived this way. Lyrically it handles Western civilisation’s persistent avoidance of acknowledging the inevitability of death – that the most we can hope for is that the fatal decline is as drawn-out as possible (interspersed with dream-diary recollections of burnt human remains strewn down an infinite highway – pretty jovial stuff).”

‘…buried where you stand’ is due for release May 17th 2024 via No Sound Records and will be available on CD and all major streaming platforms.

‘Transparency’ is due for release May 3rd 2024 and will be available on all major streaming platforms.

The album can be pre-ordered here:

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