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Alkaline Trio serves up another helping of Blood, Hair, and Eyeballs in the form of Bad Time, the darkly melodic second track to be released in advance of its 10th album, due out January 26, 2024 on Rise Records.
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Bad Time follows last month’s unveiling of the album’s frenetic title track — hailed by Consequence for its “fresh approach” and by Brooklyn Vegan as “classic Alkaline Trio… their grim yet catchy punk sounds as unmistakable as ever” — with a more subdued yet no less intense vibe. This makes perfect sense, as the lyrics find Trio guitarist/vocalist Matt Skiba finding the eyes of multiple storms in the form of the same friend’s voice:
“Bad Time was initially inspired by a friend and crush who happened to call me while I was on tour in El Paso TX as an active shooter situation was happening just across from where we were staying. We could hear gunshots and sirens as the situation escalated. My friend asked if it was a bad time to talk, and I said no — I really wanted to speak with her. It was actually a terrible and terrifying time, but it was never a bad time to hear her voice. The second verse goes back to a time in Chicago when my roommate Bobby and I were almost killed in the crossfire of a drive-by shooting — high as kites on mushrooms. We lived in a neighborhood run by Latin Kings at the time of the shooting, so I reference those facts as well as how nice it would have been to hear from the same girl back then.”
The Bad Time video sees Alkaline Trio reunited with director Ravi Dahr, who previously turned the song Blood, Hair, and Eyeballs into an apocalyptic skate-zombie (empty) pool party. “Working again with Ravi and his beautiful team has been a lot of work but even more fun,” says Skiba. “We spent the short time we had to put this together brainstorming and sending each other links and photos and film references. It’s not every day I meet someone that loves Dario Argento or Stanley Kubrick or Kenneth Anger and so on as much as I do. Ravi did all the actual, real work on this thing, but I love being involved and hope that I helped to paint this beautiful picture.”
Recorded with GRAMMY-winning producer Cameron Webb at Studio 606 in Northridge CA, Blood, Hair, and Eyeballs finds Alkaline Trio stripping its sound down to the skin and bones of its unmistakable sonic spirit, while taking that dark essence to parts previously unknown. In addition to being a darkly shining exemplar of the Trio’s signature blend of wry lyrical wit and bittersweet melodic sensibility, Blood, Hair, and Eyeballs arrives in a confluence of endings and beginnings—it’s both the first album to be released via the band’s new label home, Rise Records, and the last to feature longtime member Derek Grant, drummer on every Alkaline Trio record since 2003’s classic Good Mourning.
See below for Blood, Hair, and Eyeballs’ tracklist, as well as a full list of upcoming live dates (with support from Drug Church), on which Skiba and bassist/vocalist Dan Andriano will be joined by veteran drummer Atom Willard (Against Me!, Rocket from the Crypt).