After dropping eerie track “Gravedigger’s Chant” on Good Friday, ZEAL & ARDOR now share a contrasting, second new song, titled “Waste”, from their forthcoming new album, Stranger Fruit.
Zeal & Ardor provocateur Manuel Gagneux explains, “Waste is the introduction of the other half of Stranger Fruit. Fully incorporating the gospel and soul elements in black metal and never compromising in its intent. We give you this song as a second single, because it’s not what one might expect to come next. This is the feeling that permeates the album as a whole as well. We hope you enjoy.”
Both “Gravedigger’s Chant” & “Waste” are available now on all streaming services and as instant grat tracks when pre-ordering the new album. Stranger Fruit will be released on June 8th in multiple formats, including CD, cassette, vinyl, and digital download/stream. For vinyl fans, there’s a 2LP 180g gatefold vinyl or a 2LP limited deluxe 180g triple gatefold purple vinyl.
The diverse yet cohesive nature of the sixteen tracks on Stranger Fruit is designed to encourage the listener to dig a little deeper and find their own meaning in its words. In contrast to first LP Devil Is Fine, these songs are deliberately intended to play off each other both lyrically and musically. While the record seethes with justifiable rage, its wider-reaching aim is to unify and inspire action, not to divide and create inertia. Hope tempers bleak melancholy. Superficially, the album tells small isolated stories, but there are also references to the Goetia, Yoruba, and obscure occult literature and history.
Mixing blues, gospel, and soul with harsher music has opened up a world of possibilities for Gagneux. Previously creating as a one man solo effort, the immense interest and critical acclaim Zeal & Ardor attracted upon release of debut album Devil Is Fine, has led to the project becoming a fully-fledged, internationally-touring band. After months hidden away, crafting the new songs for Stranger Fruit, Gagneux entered the studio with producer Zebo Adam and mixer Kurt Ballou (Converge, Kvelertak, Nails). While the finished sound is larger and heavier, it is still unmistakably Zeal & Ardor.
Bear witness to Zeal & Ardor’s captivating live show. Tickets are on sale for the following headline dates & festival performances:
28.04.2018 FR – Audincourt, Impetus Festival
31.05.2018 ES – Barcelona, Primavera Sound Festival
04.06.2018 UK – London, Village Underground
08.06.2018 PT – Porto, Primavera Sound Festival
09.06.2018 CH – Interlaken, Greenfield Festival
10.06.2018 UK – Donington Park, Download Festival
21.06.2018 DK – Copenhagen, Copenhell
22.06.2018 BE – Dessel, Graspop Metal Meeting
24.06.2018 FR – Clisson, Hellfest
05.07.2018 CH – Montreux, Montreux Jazz Festival
06.07.2018 CZ – Hradec Kralove, Rock for People
07.07.2018 SK – Trenčín, Pohoda Festival
08.07.2018 FR – Belfort, Les Eurockéennes
12.07.2018 FR – Aix les Bains, Musilac Festival
14.07.2018 BE – Dour, Dour Festival
15.07.2018 FI – Ilosaari, Ilosaarirock Festival
28.07.2018 RO – Sibiu, ArtMania Festival
03.08.2018 AT – Lustenau, Szene Openair
04.08.2018 DE – Wacken, Wacken Openair
09.08.2018 DE – Kollerbach, Rocco del SchlackRo Festival
10.08.2018 DE – Tauber, Taubertal Festival
16.08.2018 NO – Trondheim, Pstereo Festival
17.08.2018 UK – Bristol, ArcTanGent Festival
19.08.2018 NL – Biddinghuizen, Lowlands Festival
24.08.2018 UK – Northampton, Shambala Festival
Zeal & Ardor is the brainchild of Manuel Gagneux, a Swiss-American formerly based in New York City. His approach draws on an alternate history and stems from two thoughts: Christianity was imposed upon American slaves, just as it was imposed in Norway, and black metal in the ’90s grew as a rebellion to monotheism. What would have happened if American slaves had rebelled in the same way? Or put bluntly: What would satanic spirituals sound like? First album Devil Is Fine was released globally in February 2017. Zeal & Ardor have been generating significant buzz ever since, with accolades piling up from both musical peers and international media, including Noisey, Rolling Stone, Alternative Press, Kerrang!, The Independent, Metal Hammer, Upset, Brooklyn Vegan, and many more.
Set to instill a universal and shared rage, Stranger Fruit will be released June 8th, 2018.