Tuesday night, Black Lips ripped through their discography and new songs during a headlining set at High Dive.
The performance was the first on their current 2020 tour in support of their Jan. 24 album “Sing In A World That’s Falling Apart.” The tour will cap off with two nights at the Earl venue in the band’s hometown city of Atlanta.
The group, comprised of frontman Cole Alexander, drummer Oakley Munson, saxophonist Zumi Rosow, guitarist Jeff Clarke, and bassist Jared Swilley took the stage after sets from Gainesville natives, The Walkers and The Amphetamines.
Before the show, bassist Jared Swilley discussed touring Florida, their new album, influences and his experience covering the Beatles with Sean Lennon and working with Yoko Ono.
Black Lips toured Florida in April 2016 supporting the Black Angels. Being Atlanta natives, the band has become familiar with Florida and enjoys their time touring the sunshine state according to Swilley.
“We love touring Florida, the weather is always good and I think we are one of the few bands that go down regularly,” he said.
The initial recording of their new album “Sing In A World That’s Falling Apart” occurred in Berlin, but the band re-recorded the album in Los Angeles. Jared said Berlin is the band’s second home and they have spent the last 10 summers in the German city.
The singles released this year and in late 2019, such as “Gentleman,” “Odelia,” and “Rumbler,” all have a blatant country twang to them. Swilley said this country direction was always something they have been heading toward, especially as they have aged. He grew up listening to artists such as Buck Owens and Charlie Feathers.
“When you get into your 30s, it’s hard to still keep playing punk rock,” he said.
The newest ensemble of Black Lips features the band’s first female, Zumi Rosow, and their first Canadian, Jeff Clarke.
“Cole and I started it when we were kids and it has been a revolving door ever since then,” Swilley said.
Sean Lennon produced Black Lip’s last full-length album “Satan’s Graffiti or God’s Art?” which features a cover of the Beatles song “It Won’t Be Long.”
“It was Sean’s idea and Yoko gave us the blessing so it was an honor,” Swilley said. “The Beatles are my favorite band and we got to play through the Beatles equipment during that so it was pretty surreal.”
Swilley said that Sir Paul McCartney has heard the cover and gave it his blessing as well.
“My dad was very proud,” Swilley said.
Black Lips’ new album “Sing In A World That’s Falling Apart” will be available everywhere Jan. 24. When asked about the meaning behind the title, Swilley described his point of view: “I don’t think the world is falling apart. The world has always been falling apart.