Barenaked Ladies mark 25th anniversary with new album, tour

Barenaked Ladies is celebrating the group’s 25th anniversary with a new album and a tour.,

“Grinning Streak” arrives on CD June 4, 2013, on Vanguard Records. A lyric video for “Boomerang,” the album’s first single, has been released. The Last Summer on Earth 2013 tour kicks off June 17, 2013, in Dallas and pairs the Ladies with Ben Folds Five and Guster.

Those who purchase tickets for LSOT 13 will receive a voucher for a download of “Grinning Streak.” Fans who preorder the album now also can receive a limited-edition 25th anniversary collectible merchandise, including commemorative handmade hockey jersey, T-shirts and posters. For details, visit barenakedladies.com

Barenaked Ladies Grinning Streak

The Barenaked Ladies’ new album arrives June 4, 2013; the band’s Last Summer on Earth tour starts June 17, 2013.

“Pop is a form that I love — it can be high-energy and intricate,” says guitarist/vocalist Robertson. “When I think of pop music, I think of the Cars and Squeeze — interesting melodic rock is what I gravitate toward and what I’m always striving for. I want guitar-heavy pop/rock that’s intelligent, evocative and thought-provoking. I want it to be singable and relatable, and I want there to be other layers in there for the people who want to go deeper—because not everybody does. I’ve heard so many times, ‘I love you guys ’cause your songs are just fun and easygoing.’ And I’m like, ‘I’m glad you enjoy them, but there’s a dark underbelly that you haven’t mined.’”

Indeed, there’s much more to the Barenaked Ladies than initially meets the ear. Suck on the songs’ candy-coated surfaces long enough and you never know what you’ll encounter in their “emotional centers,” as Robertson puts it.

He wrestled with the songs for the new album over an extended period as he plumbed the depths of his psyche in search of just those emotional centers. Along the way, Robertson experienced periods of stress, though not to the degree he’d endured while writing the material for the band’s previous studio album, 2010’s “All in Good Time.” That one was the group’s first project following the departure of Steven Page, who’d founded the band with Robertson in 1988, reconfiguring the BNL as a four-piece.

“This is the second record since all of that turmoil,” Robertson notes, “but it’s still a part of what we’re going through and what informs who we are. On the last record, there were some songs that were directly about the band split, but this record is much more about the emotional rebuilding after that process. Looking back on the maelstrom of all that upheaval, I wanted to convey a sense of hope, reconciliation and healing with these songs. ‘Off His Head,’ for example, is about pushing through difficulty. There’s a double chorus at the end that I flipped, because I didn’t want it to end with, ‘Wishing you were dead.’ That’s part of being exasperated and at your wit’s end. But what I like about this song is that it says you just do it. You think it’s hopeless, but there’s a reason you’re pushing through it. The song says you can let all these things ruin you, or you can take it on the chin and stand up again.”

“Boomerang” metaphorically examines the aftermath of a breakup, but on a deeper level it recounts an impassioned interior dialogue. “It’s a really personal song that says, ‘You can be done with me, but I’m not done with you,’” Robertson explains. “For me, it’s about feeling relevant—because, as I started to approach this record, there was a period where I felt like I didn’t know what to say and I didn’t know who cared. But then I realized, y’know, I care. I like what I do, I’m a good songwriter and I’m gonna write—I’m gonna express things. So that song is about getting your confidence back—or, as one of my colleagues would say, getting your swagger back.”

The Barenaked Ladies tour dates, cities and venues include:

June 17 — Dallas, Verizon Theatre
June 19 — Denver, Red Rocks
June 20 — Salt Lake City, Utah, USANA Amp
June 22 —  Santa Barbara, Calif., Santa Barbara Bowl
June 23 — Los Angeles, Greek Theatre
June 25 — Saratoga, Calif., Mountain Winery ●
June 26 — Saratoga, Calif., Mountain Winery ●
June 28  — Boise, Idaho, Botanical Gardens
June 29 — Seattle, White River Amp
June 30 — Missoula, Mont., Big Sky Brewing Company
July 3 — Fargo, N.D., Newman Field ●●
July 5 — Columbus, OH, LC Pavilion
July 6 — Cincinnati, (Venue TBA)
July 8 — Lansing, Mich., Commonground Festival
July 9 — Chicago, Charter One Pavilion
July 11 — Toronto, Molson Canadian Amphitheatre
July 12 — Detroit, DTE Energy Music Theatre
July 13 — Nashville, Tenn., The Woods at Fontanel
July 15 — Columbia, Md., Merriweather Post Pavilion
July 16 — Boston, Bank of America Pavilion ●
July 18 — Philadelphia, Mann Music Ctr
July 19 — Uncasville, Conn., Mohegan Sun Arena
July 20 — Holmdel, N.J., PNC
July 21 — Bangor, Maine, Waterfront Park
July 23 — Lenox, Mass., Tanglewood
July 25 — Charlotte, N.C., T W Cable Uptown Amp
July 26 — Alpharetta, Ga., Verizon Wireless Amp
July 27 — Charleston, S.C., Family Circle Stadium
July 28 — Raleigh, N.C., Red Hat Amphitheatre
July 30 — Brooklyn, N.Y., Celebrate Brooklyn! at the Prospect Park Bandshell

● = Barenaked Ladies and Ben Folds Five only
●● = Barenaked Ladies & Guster only

For more information about the bands, visit:
• Barenaked Ladies: www.barenakedladies.com; www.lastsummeronearth.com
• Ben Folds Five: www.benfolds.com
• Guster: www.guster.com

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