Shovels & Rope Announce New Album ‘Something Is Working Up Above My Head,’ Share 2 New Singles

Shovels & Rope have shared details about a new record, as well as two tracks and a lengthy tour schedule | Courtesy of the artist

Charleston’s Shovels & Rope—that is, married couple Cary Ann Hearst and Michael Trent—have announced their sixth studio album, Something Is Working Up Above My Head (Sept. 6, Dualtone Records), and shared its first two singles, the story-forward “Colorado River” and “Love Song From a Dog.” The folk-punk duo have also unveiled a fall tour in support of their new record.

“Colorado River” is a compelling initial preview of the album, a swaggering, nasty murder ballad that boasts a combination of gnarled electric guitar, punishing drums, howled gang vocals and resonant piano clangs that would make Jack White’s ears perk up. Hearst and Trent sing from the perspective of a killer looking back on a childhood full of dirty deeds (“I can still remember how it felt / When the air got still on the Colorado River”) and hiding the damning evidence in the river’s depths.

“Love Song From a Dog” has a similarly strong narrative, but couches it in much gentler instrumentation, with only acoustic strums to accompany Heart, Trent and Gregory Alan Isakov’s emotive vocal harmonies. The lyrics maintain a firm grip on the heartstrings throughout, as the track’s canine narrator recalls their birth and adoption before detailing their devotion to their two-legged caretaker: “I lay down dead every time you leave / I can barely breathe / I lock my eyes on the clearing in the trees / Till you return to me.”

Shovels & Rope will perform at a handful of summer festivals, including late July’s Newport Folk Festival, before kicking off their North American tour in September. Starting with a Sept. 11 stop in Charlotte, North Carolina, the duo will work their way across the continent, with stops in Brooklyn, Toronto, Chicago, Louisville, their hometown of Charleston, Los Angeles, Portland, Seattle and Denver before wrapping with a Dec. 14 show in Aspen, Colorado. You’ll find their complete tour slate down below.

Something Is Working Up Above My Head is now available for preorder.

Shovels & Rope Tour Dates:

June 14 – Gulfport, MS – iMPCAC

June 22 – Milwaukee, WI – Summerfest

June 27 – Black Mountain, NC – Pisgah Brewing Company

July 13 – Whitefish, MT – Under the Big Sky Festival

July 26 – Newport, RI – Newport Folk Festival

Sept. 11 – Charlotte, NC – Neighborhood Theatre

Sept. 13 – Brooklyn, NY – Music House of Williamsburg

Sept. 14 – Fort Hill, PA – Deer Valley Folk Festival

Sept. 15 – Ardmore, PA – Ardmore Music Hall

Sept. 17 – Portsmouth, NH – 3S Artspace

Sept. 18 – Cambridge, MA – The Sinclair

Sept. 20 – Toronto, ON – Lee’s Palace

Sept. 21 – Ferndale, MI – The Magic Bag

Sept. 22 – Chicago, IL – Lincoln Hall

Sept. 24 – St. Paul, MN – Amsterdam

Sept. 25 – Des Moines, IA – Wooly’s

Sept. 27 – Omaha, NE – The Waiting Room

Sept. 28 – Maquoketa, IA – Codfish Hollow

Sept. 29 – Bloomington, IL – The Castle Theatre

Oct. 1 – Louisville, KY – Headliners Music Hall

Oct. 2 – Knoxville, TN – Bijou Theatre

Oct. 4-5 – Charleston, SC – Music Farm

Dec. 4 – Phoenix, AZ – Crescent Ballroom

Dec. 5 – Solana Beach, CA – Belly Up Tavern

Dec. 6 – Los Angeles, CA – Teragram Ballroom

Dec. 7 – Menlo Park, CA – The Guild Theatre

Dec. 9 – Portland, OR – Wonder Ballroom

Dec. 10 – Seattle, WA – Neumos

Dec. 12 – Salt Lake City, UT – The Commonwealth Room

Dec. 13 – Denver, CO – The Gothic Theatre

Dec. 14 – Aspen, CO – Belly Up Aspen

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