The Drums Share New Single “Heart Basel”

The Drums Share New Single, "Heart Basel."

The Drums’ forthcoming album “Abysmal Thoughts” is already being lauded as a return to form, and today the band reinforces that notion with a new, quintessential Drums single. “Heart Basel,” the second single off of the band’s fourth full-length, is yet another excellent, summertime-primed pop gem. You can look forward to “Abysmal Thoughts” out on June 16th.

The Drums’ frontman Jonny Pierce on the new song:

“I went through the most significant breakup of my life during the making of “Abysmal Thoughts”. During that vulnerable period, I attached myself to this guy who did not care at all for my feelings, but was good at pretending that he did. In retrospect, I think I knew deep down that he didn’t give a shit about me. But I continued to let him treat me like garbage because I thought if I had this handsome guy with me that somehow I wasn’t doing too bad. Of course now – with some professional help – I see that I was just lacking self-love and while it’s unhealthy to stay in that headspace for very long, it does make for good songwriting. ‘Heart Basel’ is a song about him treating me ‘kindly’ at Art Basel in Miami and then treating me like garbage after he got what he needed. You live and you sometimes learn.”

The Drums will take “Abysmal Thoughts” on the road starting in July. See below to find a show near you.

Across a year and three months of home recording between Los Angeles and his cabin in upstate New York – with the same guitar, synthesizer, drum machine and reverb unit he’s played since the beginning of The Drums – Pierce put together “Abysmal Thoughts”. With help from engineer Jonathan Schenke (Parquet Courts, Mannequin Pussy and more), the result is an unflinching autobiography with Pierce back in full control of the band. He’s back to not just writing all the songs by himself but playing every instrument, too, this time realizing exactly his own personal vision for the band. Not coincidentally, it’s some of the most revelatory work he’s ever done. It is a vivid self-portrait, alive with the hyperdramatic emotional potency of the Smiths, the arch literary pop moves of New Zealanders like the Verlaines and the Clean, and the riotous clatter-punk power of the UK DIY bands of 1979.

As the last album cycle for The Drums finished and his long-term relationship with his former partner dissolved, Pierce took some time away from music altogether in hopes to reconnect with himself and find future inspiration. Determined to make a change, he ended up leaving his longtime home in New York and found himself isolated in a large empty apartment in Los Angeles, all his plans for life and love suddenly in shambles. That hardship and confusion – and the clarity of personality and purpose it inspired – became “Abysmal Thoughts”.

With The Drums’ new record, band founder Jonny Pierce is making the exact album he’s always held in his heart. Of course, this is The Drums, so that heart is broken – but there’s beauty and even bliss in this kind of heartbreak. “I said I wanted to let life happen?” he says. “Well, the universe listened and life began to fuck me real good! But honestly, I make the worst art when I’m comfortable. The stuff that resonates with me the longest – and that resonates with others – is always the stuff that comes out of my misery.”

Now the highs are higher than ever, and the lows absolutely bottomless. The Drums are back, and while there’s a heavy sadness here, Pierce is stronger for fighting through it. “Happiness can be confusing to me,” says Pierce. “It shows up out of nowhere, and before you can even get used to it, it’s vanished. But “Abysmal Thoughts?” I can rely on them – and with the political chaos that is raining down, who knows when these dark feelings will subside?”

Tour dates

July 17th: Neumos – Seattle, WA
July 18th: Venue – Vancouver, BC
July 19th: Wonder Ballroom – Portland, OR
July 21st: The Fillmore – San Francisco, CA
July 22nd: FYF Festival – Los Angeles, CA
July 30th: Wayhome Music and Arts Festival – Oro-Medonte, ON
July 31st: El Club – Detroit, MI
August 1st: Bell’s – Kalamazoo, MI
August 3rd: Lollapalooza – Chicago, IL
August 4th: The Grog Shop – Cleveland, OH
August 5th: Hifi – Indianapolis, IN
September 14th: Teatro Barcelo – Madrid, Spain
September 15th: Razmatazz – Barcelona, Spain
September 16th: Donostia Kutxa Kultur Festibala – San Sebastian, Spain
September 18th: Latteria Molloy – Brescia, Italy
September 19th: Les Docks – Lausanne, Switzerland
September 20th: La Gaite Lyrique – Paris, France
September 24th: Pumperhuset – Copenhagen, Denmark
September 25th: Parkteateret – Oslo, Norway
September 26th: Kraken – Stockholm, Sweden
September 28th: Lido – Berlin, Germany
September 29th: Orangerie – Brussels, Belgium
September 30th: Paradiso Noord – Amsterdam, Holland
October 2nd: Thekla – Bristol, UK
October 3rd: Whelans – Dublin, Ireland
October 4th: Academy 2 – Manchester, UK
October 5th: Art School – Glasgow, UK
October 7th: o2 Shepherds Bush Empire – London, UK