Midlake is proud to announce their mesmerizing new single, “Bethel Woods,” available now at all DSPs and streaming services. An official music video – directed by filmmaker Brantley Gutierrez (Paul McCartney, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Diplo) and starring acclaimed actor Michael Peña (The Shield, Narcos, Ant-Man and the Wasp) – premieres today via YouTube. “Bethel Woods” precedes the eagerly awaited arrival of Midlake’s upcoming fifth studio album, For The Sake Of Bethel Woods, due via ATO Records in the US and Bella Union in the UK on Friday, March 18; pre-orders are available now.
“‘Bethel Woods’ lyrically was born out of a documentary film still of our keyboardist Jesse Chandler’s dad, Dave, at 16-years-old, sitting in the massive crowd of Woodstock in 1969,” says Midlake’s Eric Pulido. “I felt that moment in time embodied the perfect depiction of a paradisal place. Dave tragically died a few years ago and I was moved to write this song from his point of view with a message of peace in returning to that special place and reuniting with loved ones ‘down the road.’”
“When Midlake approached me to direct the video for ‘Bethel Woods’ I knew I wanted to do a take on a ghost story,” says Brantley Gutierrez. “To play with the idea of returning to a place full of memories. The concept of emotional attachment to the people and the memories in those places, what the confusion might feel like for those who have passed on. Working with the highly talented Michael Peña was an absolute pleasure; he brought something to the character that felt honest and relatable.”
L to R: Michael Peña, Danielle Dallacco
Recently named alongside Abba, Guns N’ Roses, and Dua Lipa in The Guardian’s “Pop, Rock and Classical Music To Look Forward To In 2022,” For The Sake Of Bethel Woods includes the acclaimed first single, “Meanwhile…,” available now at all DSPs and streaming services. Hailed by The Guardian as “a lovely, softly psychedelic glide,” the track is joined by an exclusive live video, streaming now via YouTube. The captivating performance – filmed at Dallas, TX’s Modern Electric Sound Recorders by director Rett Rogers (Nicole Atkins, Nathaniel Rateliff) and co-director Barbara FG – marks the first in a new multi-part series of exclusive live sessions entitled “Meanwhile In Texas 2021,” with additional installments set to premiere in the coming weeks.
Midlake will celebrate their long-overdue return with a wide-ranging world tour schedule. European and UK headline dates get underway March 16 in Gothenburg, Sweden; North American headline dates begin May 8 at Nashville, TN’s 3rd & Lindsley and then continue through the month. Additional dates will be announced soon. For complete details and ticket information, please visit www.midlakeband.com/tour.
NORTH AMERICAN TOUR 2022
8 – Nashville, TN – 3rd & Lindsley
10 – Washington, DC – Union Stage
11 – Philadelphia, PA – World Cafe Live (Downstairs)
13 – Woodstock, NY – Levon Helm Studios
14 – New York, NY – Bowery Ballroom
16 – Pittsburgh, PA – Thunderbird Cafe & Music Hall
17 – Lexington, KY – Headliners Music Hall
19 – St. Louis, MO – Off Broadway
20 – Kansas City, MO – recordBar
21 – Oklahoma City, OK – Beer City Music Hall
UK TOUR 2022
5 – Brighton – Chalk
6 – London – Roundhouse
8 – Newcastle – University Student’s Union
9 – Edinburgh – Assembly Rooms
10 – Manchester – Albert Hall
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Produced, engineered, and mixed by GRAMMY® Award-winner John Congleton (St. Vincent, Explosions in the Sky, Sharon Van Etten) at Elmwood Recording Studio in Dallas, TX, For The Sake Of Bethel Woods marks Midlake’s fifth full-length release and first time recording with an outside producer. The result is an album of immersive warmth and mystery from a landmark band once feared lost by fans, but here revivified with freshness and constancy of intent. A desire to commune with the past and connect with present, lived experience asserts itself throughout songs such as “Bethel Woods” – named of course for the site of 1969’s original 37-acre Woodstock festival field – and the sky-scraping space-rock of “Exile.” That same resonant spirit is further embodied by the instantly memorable cover art, designed by pro skateboarder/filmmaker/visual artist Brian Lotti and featuring a striking photo of keyboardist/flautist Jesse Chandler’s father, who tragically passed away in 2018.
“At age 16 my father and his friend hitchhiked from Ridgewood, NJ to the Woodstock festival in 1969,” says Chandler. “This image of him with his hand to his face appears in the 1970 Woodstock documentary, as the camera pans across the crowd during John Sebastian’s set. My father actually ended up moving to Woodstock, NY – where I grew up – in 1981. For me, the picture of that kid, my dad, forever frozen in time, encapsulates what it means to be in the throes of impressionable and fleeting youth, and all that the magic of music, peace, love and communion bring to it, whether one knows it at the time or not. (I think he knew it).”
A powerful, warming expression of resolve and renewal, For The Sake Of Bethel Woods opens new futures for Midlake while still honoring their now storied history. Formed in the small town of Denton, TX, the band delivered an auspicious debut with 2004’s Bamnan and Slivercork, followed two years later by 2006’s wondrous and much beloved The Trials of Van Occupanther, both now rightfully hailed as modern classics. Bolstered by a growing fanbase and a developed sense of their own far-reaching abilities, Midlake evinced a characteristic embrace of change by visiting darker psych-folk terrain on 2010’s The Courage of Others while also backing John Grant on that same year’s milestone album, Queen of Denmark. Guitarist Eric Pulido stepped into the role of lead vocalist with 2013’s exploratory Antiphon, joined by new members Jesse Chandler (keyboards, piano, flute) and Joey McClellan (guitars).
Since then, Midlake have been active on an array of fronts, including the all-star project BNQT, founded by Pulido and featuring Fran Healy (Travis), Alex Kapranos (Franz Ferdinand), Ben Bridwell (Band of Horses), and Jason Lytle (Grandaddy), backed by Chandler, McClellan, and Midlake drummer McKenzie Smith.
Midlake is: Eric Pulido, Eric Nichelson, McKenzie Smith, Jesse Chandler, and Joey McClellan.