“There is a history of black entertainers feeling that after they have achieved a certain level of success that they are above discussions of race but that idea is a delusion,” said Kele of his new material. “As a person of colour living in the western world, it does not matter how much wealth one accumulates, race will follow you wherever you go.
“With ‘Jungle Bunny’ I wanted explore this idea: In a time of such rampant division and public racism, what is the responsibility of the black entertainer?”
The lyrics to ‘Jungle Bunny’ deal heavily with the daily racial anxieties that pervade modern society, as Okereke sings over tribal beats and electro-disco sounds: “He’s trying to run, he’s trying to run to outrun a gun – he’s got full ‘Ye, and he’s starting to feel like shit might pop off.”
Check out the single below.
The tracklist for ‘2042’ is:
1) JUNGLE BUNNY
2) PAST LIVES INTERLUDE
3) LET ENGLAND BURN
4) ST KAEPERNICK WEPT
5) GUAVA RUBICON
6) MY BUSINESS
7) CEILING GAMES
8) WHERE SHE CAME FROM INTERLUDE
9) BETWEEN ME AND MY MAKER
10) NATURAL HAIR
11) CYRIL’S BLOOD
12) SECRETS WEST 29TH
13) CATCHING FEELINGS
14) A DAY OF NATIONAL SHAME INTERLUDE
15) OCEAN VIEW
16) BACK BURNER
Pre-order the album here.
Having spent much of the last year touring to celebrate Bloc Party’s seminal debut ‘Silent Alarm’, Okereke also spoke to NME about the potential of touring in honour of their second album ‘A Weekend In The City‘ back in January.
“A lot of the themes from that record have come full circle and are very much apparent in public discourse right now,” Okereke told NME. “That record feels, to me, very prescient. I don’t know, I’m definitely open to it.”
However, the format that these shows might take could be more of joining the dots between their back catalogue.
“A friend of mine was talking to me about something that The Cure used to do, or still do,” said Okereke. “Rather than just revisit records on their own, they would play shows from records that they felt were connected to each other. I think that might be an interesting thing to do because I can already see connections now between some of the music that we’ve made and some of the places that we’ve visited. I think that’s interesting: to draw parallels, at least, between the works that you’ve made.”