Ahead of their new album A Productive Cough, Titus Andronicus have shared a second single, “Above the Bodega (Local Business),” a bluesy, horn-heavy strummer that continues to presage an exciting new direction for the band.
Bandleader Patrick Stickles explains the new tune as follows:
All the songs on [A Productive Cough] deal with the realities of life, as I understand them, in my adopted hometown of New York City, and one quality that does much to define New York City life is the access to 24-hour consumption. The first floor of the apartment building in which I live is occupied by a deli-grocery, to which I give my patronage several times a day. As a result, I have developed a particular understanding with the staff there which I have not so far heard articulated in song. Thusly, I took it upon myself to write the “ultimate” song explicating the bodega clerk-patron relationship.
When pressed to elaborate further, Stickles adds:
More and more, we are defined by the things which we consume, and those who facilitate that consumption may glimpse a more truthful view of ourselves than the carefully curated image we share with our loved ones. No one knows the depths of my vice better than they who oversee the transactions which make it possible—in this way, the deli clerk knows me better than my own mother.
“Above the Bodega (Local Business)” is accompanied by a live, in-studio music video from director Ray Concepcion, who shadowed Titus Andronicus throughout A Productive Cough’s recording at Marcata Recording in New Paltz, N.Y. The video—in which Stickles’ mother actually appears—serves as a preview of the band’s forthcoming, full-length “making-of-the-album” documentary, which will be released on Feb. 26. The band’s press release encourages keeping an eye on A-Productive-Cough.com for further updates on the doc.
“Above the Bodega (Local Business)” follows lead single “Number One (In New York),” which was released in early January alongside A Productive Cough’s announcement. Paste’s Lizzie Manno described that track as “a slow, tension-building piano ballad centered around singer-songwriter Patrick Stickles’ unshakeable, vigorous lead vocals.”
Titus Andronicus will soon embark on their first-ever acoustic tour, with Stickles performing alongside pianist Alex Molini and Pile’s Rick Maguire providing direct support on all dates. The tour starts on March 7 in Kingston, N.Y.—you can find the full itinerary here.
Watch the “Above the Bodega (Local Business)” video below and listen to the band’s 2008 Daytrotter Session further down. A Productive Cough is out on March 2 via Merge Records and available for preorder here.