Unknown Mortal Orchestra have returned with the 10th (and seemingly final) instalment of their annual ‘SB’ series, celebrating the holiday season with a winding, psychedelic journey spanning 42 minutes.
The instrumental slow-burner is largely a solo effort from bandleader Ruban Nielson, who played everything on it aside from the drums (which were handled by his brother Kody) and bass (handled by Jacob Portrait).
In terms of length, it beats last year’s half-hour ‘SB-09’ by a stonking 14 minutes, making it the longest installation in the series, and approximately 3.5 times the length of the shortest, ‘SB-03’ (which clocks in at 12 minutes).
Have a listen to ‘SB-10’ below:
‘SB-10’ is Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s second drop for the year, following the October released of the single ‘I Killed Captain Cook’. The acoustic ballad – told from the perspective of the Hawaiian who killed British coloniser James Cook, a story Nielson’s mother would tell him as a child – it’s said to preview the band’s upcoming sixth album.
The album itself is yet to be officially revealed, but according to the band’s label, Jagjaguwar, it’ll be a two-disc effort, primed for release sometime in the new year. It should arrive prior to the band’s upcoming North American tour, which kicks off in March and boasts an itinerary of 20 shows. More details on all the dates can be found here, with tickets available here.
Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s last album was their fifth, ‘IC-01 Hanoi’, which arrived in October of 2018. Their first fully instrumental album, it followed the release of ‘Sex & Food’ just six months prior; in a three-star review, NME’s Thomas Smith said the latter album saw the band “pushing their sound impressively, bending the rule book as crudely as they can before the spine breaks”.
Among the band’s other recent efforts are their 2021 singles ‘Weekend Run’ and ‘This Life’ as well as a remix of Arlo Parks’ ‘Too Good’. Neilson, too, recently put his spin on Soccer Mommy’s ‘Circle The Drain’ and ‘Drawbridge’ by Westerman.