On 5th November, Houndmouth — vocalist/guitarist Matthew Myers, drummer/vocalist Shane Cody, and bassist/vocalist Zak Appleby — will release ‘Good For You’, their debut release for Dualtone Records. Recorded with Brad Cook (Waxahatchee, Hiss Golden Messenger) and mixed by Jon Ashley (The War On Drugs, B.J. Barham), the fourth full-length album from the Indiana-bred, platinum-selling band marks a return to what Houndmouth does best: “shaggy, swinging, big-screen storytelling” (NPR Music) set to a rustic, home-recorded sound.
Today’s single release — the vibrant ‘Las Vegas’ — invigorates the bittersweet nature of ‘Good For You’ with unabashed power, closing out the record with a triumphant spark and a smirk to what could still be. Built off of an older demo, the band nearly withheld the track due to its outlier status — but ultimately found its rowdy energy to be the final, frenetic wave goodbye to a year lost to isolation: “I believe in Las Vegas/The city of plastic/So real it’s dangerous/So real it could save us.”
Slowly brought to life in Houndmouth’s longtime headquarters — The Green House, a 19th-century shotgun-style residence decked out in gold wallpaper and crystal chandeliers that used to belong to Cody’s grandparents — Good For You bears a hi-fi minimalism that illuminates the record’s skillfully crafted storytelling.
Houndmouth enfolds entire novels within their lyrics: over Good For You’s ten tracks, a motley cast of characters race through scenes saturated with magic. From beauty queens and Cinderella’s limousine in “Cool Jam,” to vampires and parking lot lovers in “Ride or Die,” Houndmouth whimsically captures the ache of stagnant love affairs and the fleeting joys of ageing with a surrealist flair.
But atop Good For You’s melancholy motifs lies a wealth of dulcet melodies that waltz sweetly across beds of celestial organs and grungy guitar riffs. The ten songs sparkle, fade, and sparkle again, mixing jaded wisdom with hopeful harmonies. “This album felt like being back in time again, only now everything is a little more dialled-back and cared-for,” says Cody. “It was like a return to the way we fell in love with playing music together.” Good For You tenderly tones down the youthful abandon of the band’s early days, imbuing their “earthen and imaginative folk” (NPR Music) with distinctive, finespun balladry.