New York, NY (Top40 Charts)
Raleigh-based band The Connells shared "Steadman's Wake," the title track of their upcoming album, due September
24 via Black
Park/Missing Piece Records. The song is currently streaming on Stereogum which writes, "the track will surely appeal to fans of the Connells' fellow Southern jangle-rockers R.E.M., and you might hear some Drive By Truckers in the sauce when they launch into the chorus..." In addition to releasing their first album in 20 years, the band has planned a run of fall US tour dates.
"I generally find writing lyrics to be the most challenging aspect of songwriting and with 'Steadman's Wake' that certainly proved to be the case." says Mike Connell, " I set out with the modest ambition of tackling the opioid
crisis, the futility of war, and the events in Charlottesville, VA a couple of years ago, all in the context of a four minute pop song (being facetious, obviously). The other guys in the band really liked it, and felt that of all the tunes we were working on it best expressed where we 'are' individually and as a band."
Despite the two decades since their last recording, The Connells never quit performing, and Mike Connell never stopped writing songs. Steadman's Wake features eight new songs and 3 re-recorded versions of previously-released demos which originally appeared on 2001's Old-School Dropouts CD. This is also the band's first album to feature two new members, guitarist Mike Ayers and drummer Rob Ladd (who have been in the lineup since 2002 and 2012, respectively), and the band's first record with Mike Connell taking a prominent role as vocalist.
The Connells first formed in Chapel Hill at the University of North Carolina in 1984, debuting a year later with the song "Darker Days" on the Dolphin Records More Mondo Compilation, followed by their debut album Darker Days in 1986. Their 1987 Mitch Easter-produced album Boylan Heights established them as college-radio favorites, and they went on to work with producers including Gary Smith (Pixies, Billy Bragg), Hugh Jones (Echo & the Bunnymen, Modern
English) and Lou Giordano (Goo Goo Dolls, Bob Mould) on subsequent albums. Three albums by The Connells have made the Billboard 200 charts in the United States, but their biggest commercial success came overseas in 1993 with "'74- '75," a pensive and moody ballad from their Ring LP which reached the top-10 in 11 European countries in 1995 (including No. 1 in Sweden, Norway and Germany).
Steadman's Wake, their long awaited 9th album, was originally set for release in 2020 but was delayed due to the pandemic, a hard delay for the band's highly anticipated return. Tickets for The Connells tour dates are available now.