2014’s Supernova represented a bit of a left turn for singer/songwriter Ray LaMontagne. Produced by The Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach, the album boasted a more psychedelic, trippy sound. Supernova‘s ¬†title track was the most relentlessly upbeat song Ray’d recorded up to that point. He even made a video for it (his first in a five album career–granted, he didn’t appear in it). Unfortunately, the album didn’t receive the same level of acclaim (commercially or critically) as previous entries in his catalog. Not that I think Ray cared too much; he’s always presented himself as an “anti-star”. The guy lives in a remote part of New England, rarely does interviews, talks very little on stage. The fact that Ray did an Ask Me Anything on Reddit during the last album cycle still blows my mind. I can only imagine he was coerced to do so at gunpoint. Then again, Ray also seems like the kinda guy who might have an arsenal up in his mountain home.

At any rate, Ray has teamed up with My Morning Jacket’s Jim James for Ouroboros, a new album that comes out March 4th. The first single is called “Hey, No Pressure”, ¬†and…seriously, if I hadn’t read otherwise, I’d have assumed Auerbach was still in the producer’s chair. It’s certainly the song Ray’s recorded that has the most similarity to the lo-fi bluesy thump that’s become the Keys’ trademark. None of that information has any bearing on whether “Hey, No Pressure” is good, though. It is, and I highly recommend you listen to it at top volume.

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