PREMIERE: Fruit Bats’ Eric D. Johnson Declares Self “Absolute Loser,” Still Seems Pretty Happy

It's the title track from Fruit Bats' forthcoming record of the same name.

On May 13, Eric D. Johnson will release his first album as Fruit Bats since 2011’s Tripper. Absolute Loser comes after a period of mourning and release for Johnson, who disbanded the Fruit Bats project in 2013 following the loss of his wife’s pregnancy. Saying goodbye to the project that had formed his identity for the better part of thirteen years wasn’t without its own psychic echoes, either; 2014’s EDJ, which Johnson released under his own name, was in his words a receptacle for “the outpouring of grief” he experienced.

It’s a series of feelings he processes on Absolute Loser, the title of which doesn’t refer to, like, someone who’s made their dissatisfaction known to Donald Trump, but to the concept of having lost literally everything.

While that may sound a little dark (and, to be sure, it is), the album’s title track certainly isn’t, and we’re pleased to be premiering it today. With its rolling guitar line and ambient backdrop, the song recalls fellow Chicago folkies Califone (with whom Johnson played for a stint), while Johnson’s bright vocal suggests sunnier times ahead: “So seasick and waiting for the storm to break,” he sings, “an absolute loser on the verge of something great—just waiting for the storm to break.”

You can check out the track’s visual accompaniment below, and catch the reconstituted Fruit Bats on the road; those dates are below, too.

Absolute Loser track list

“From a Soon-to-be Ghost Town”Fruit_Bats-2016-Absolute_Loser
“Humbug Mountain Song”
“None of Us”
“Absolute Loser”
“Baby Bluebird”
“My Sweet Midwest”
“Birthday Drunk”
“Good Will Come to You”
“It Must Be Easy”
“Don’t You Know That”

Fruit Bats tour dates

May
5 – Northampton, MA @ Iron Horse
6 – Burlington VT @ Signal Kitchen
7 – Somerville, MA@ ONCE Ballroom
8 – Hudson, NY @ Club Helsinki
12 – Brooklyn, NY @ Rough Trade
13 – Philadelphia, PA @ Boot & Saddle
14 – Washington, DC @ Rock & Roll Hotel
19 – San Francisco, CA @ The Independent
20 – Los Angeles, CA@ The Roxy Theatre
21 – San Diego, CA @ Casbah
22 – Phoenix, AZ @ Valley Bar
24 – Austin, TX @ Parish
25 – Dallas, TX @ Three Links
27 – Colorado Springs, CO @ MeadowGrass Music Festival 2016
28 – Morrison, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheater
29 – Denver, CO @ Larimer Lounge
31 – Des Moines, IA @ Wooley’s

June
1 – Indianapolis, IN @ The Hi-Fi
2 – Chicago, IL @ Beat Kitchen
3–5 – Nelsonville, OH @ Nelsonville Music Festival
10–11 – Sonoma, CA @ Huichica

July
22 – Newport, RI @ Newport Folk Festival

August
57 – Happy Valley, OR @ Pickathon Festival

Absolute Loser is out May 13 via Easy Sound Recording Co.

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