Arlo Parks Shares “Blades” With Video
Twice Grammy-nominated, Mercury Prize and BRIT Award-winning artist Arlo Parks shares the latest single from her second album My Soft Machine via Transgressive Records, with the groove-laden “Blades”; a Paul Epworth produced track with nu-disco loops, synths and soundscapes. It was written in what Arlo calls “the magic week,” where the pair produced three songs for the album in five days.
Arlo shares, “Paul is just a wizard; he has this childlike spirit that I’ve always really loved and he brought that to ‘Blades.’ I wanted to make something that I can dance to, finally, because I feel like my songs don’t really have that quality in general. So, I took inspiration from bands like ESG, artists like Kaytranada, and a lot of the kind of 70s Zambian psychedelic rock that I love.”
Written about tackling the collapse of a friendship and trying to find the courage to rebuild it, Arlo explains, “I imagine this moment at a party where you see someone across the room that you haven’t seen in a while, you felt yourself growing apart, and you’re like, should I, should I not? And then you find the courage to approach them. That’s the story of that song.”
“Blades” follows her recent singles “Weightless” and “Impurities”, both of which featured across BBC Radio 1 and 6 Music’s A Lists concurrently, saw her take to the stage for a performance on The Jonathan Ross Show, as well as feature on the cover of The Guardian Film & Music, DORK, MusicWeek and DIY.
Arlo Parks recently announced she will embark on a run of headline tour dates across the UK and Europe for September, which includes a show at London’s Eventim Apollo. Additionally, she recently announced a run of record store performances, in which she’ll play some songs from the new album and sign some copies for fans. Tickets are already sold out.
The forthcoming dates follow Arlo’s headline performance at BBC 6 Music Festival last month, as well as performances alongside Harry Styles at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Billie Eilish at The O2 London, Florence & The Machine in Canada, and Clairo across her North American tour.
The album was recorded between London and Los Angeles, with the producers Paul Epworth, Ariel Rechtshaid, Romil Hemnani (Brockhampton), Frank Ocean-collaborator Buddy Ross and Carter Lang (SZA) – as well as some self-production from Arlo herself.
Parks shares about how the new album and album title came to fruition in this beautiful performance video noting: “The world/our view of it is peppered by the biggest things we experience – our traumas, upbringing, vulnerabilities almost like visual snow.
This record is life through my lens, through my body – the mid 20s anxiety, the substance abuse of friends around me, the viscera of being in love for the first time, navigating PTSD and grief and self sabotage and joy, moving through worlds with wonder and sensitivity- what it’s like to be trapped in this particular body.
There is a quote from a Joanna Hogg film called The Souvenir, it’s an A24 semi-autobiographical film with Tilda Swinton – it recounts a young film student falling in love with an older, charismatic man then being drawn into his addiction – in an early scene he’s explaining why people watch films – ‘we don’t want to see life as it is played out we want to see life as it is experienced in this soft machine.’ So there we have it… My Soft Machine.”
My Soft Machine follows her highly-praised debut album Collapsed in Sunbeams, which received two Grammy nominations for Best New Artist and Best Alternative Music Album, won the BRIT Award for Best New Artist, received the Honda Mercury Prize, and won the BBC Introducing Artist Of The Year Award. Her debut album also reached the top 3 on the UK Album Charts and won the AIM Awards for Best Independent Album and UK Independent Breakthrough.
On top of all this, Arlo was also nominated for Breakthrough International Act at the BET Awards. Arlo was named as the youngest ever high-profile supporter of UNICEF and an ambassador for UK mental health charity CALM. She has plans to continue her extensive work with both charities into 2023.
Along with the towering list of awards, Arlo’s debut album was included on almost every ‘Best Albums’ list and received critical acclaim from the likes of The New York Times, Rolling Stone, The FADER and many more.
Arlo performed singles from her debut album on Jimmy Kimmel, Jimmy Fallon, James Corden, CBS This Morning: Saturday, and Ellen DeGeneres in the US, spotlighting her in front of millions of viewers nationwide.
She also appeared on Later…With Jools Holland and The Graham Norton Show in the UK and broke the record for most played artist on non-com radio,
Check out Arlo’s upcoming live dates below, and stay tuned for more music coming soon.
My Soft Machine PRE-ORDER/SAVE:
Upcoming Tour Dates:
* = SOLD OUT
- 5/24 – Kingston, UK @ Prizm w/ Banquet Records (intimate outstore performance)*
- 5/29 – London, UK @ Rough Trade East, Early Show (in-store performance + signing)*
- 5/29 – London, UK @ Rough Trade East, Late Show (in-store performance + signing)*
- 6/3 – Barcelona, Spain @ Primavera Sound
- 6/8 – Porto, Portugal @ Primavera Sound
- 6/10 – Madrid, Spain @ Primavera Sound
- 6/14 – Leeds, UK @ The Wardrobe w/ Crash Records (intimate outstore performance)*
- 7/5 – Tokyo, Japan @ Ebisu Garden Hall*
- 7/6 – Osaka, Japan @ Umeda Club Quattro
- 7/8 – Seoul, South Korea @ Musinsa Garage
- 8/5 – Oxfordshire, UK @ Wilderness Festival
- 8/26 – Reading, UK @ Reading Festival
- 8/27 – Leeds, UK @ Leeds Festival
- 9/5 – Dublin, Ireland @ 3Olympia Theatre
- 9/13 – Amsterdam, Netherlands @ Paradiso
- 9/14 – Amsterdam, Netherlands @ Paradiso*
- 9/15 – Brussels, Belgium @ Ancienne Belgique
- 9/17 – Berlin, Germany @ Huxleys Neue Welt*
- 9/19 – Milan, Italy @ Alcatraz
- 9/21 – Paris, France @ L’Olympia
- 9/28 – London, UK @ Eventim Apollo
- 10/1 – Washington, DC @ All Things Go Festival
Arlo Parks – My Soft Machine / Transgressive Records (May 26th 2023)
- Purple Phase
- Pegasus ft. Phoebe Bridgers
- Dog Rose
- I’m Sorry
- Room (red wings)