Okkervil River will release its new album, I Am Very Far, which is the follow-up to 2008’s The Stand Ins, on May 10. I Am Very Far features eleven new songs, produced and arranged by frontman Will Sheff in Austin, New York City and Connecticut.
I Am Very Far features the group’s largest musical palette to date. In addition to a string and horn section, choral and orchestral arrangements, Sheff recorded file cabinets thrown across the room, a solo created out of a fast-forwarding and rewinding boombox, and much more. In contrast to the band’s usual practice of holing up in one studio for months on end, Sheff opted for a series of short, high-intensity sessions with a larger band in various studios. Sessions would, at times, find over a dozen musicians performing live in a single room.
“The goal was to push my brain to places it didn’t want to go,” explained Sheff.
Work on I Am Very Far started after a year spent on other projects. Sheff contributed vocals to The New Pornographers’ album Together, wrote a song for Norah Jones’ The Fall, produced an upcoming album for the Brooklyn-based band Bird of Youth, and helmed Roky Erickson’s acclaimed ‘True Love Cast Out All Evil with Okkervil River. Sheff was subsequently nominated for a 2011 Grammy for his liner notes to True Love.
You can download Okkervil River’s music right here.