Andrew W.K. fans have good reason to look forward to his next album, since it was made especially for them.
"This album is a direct dedication to the people who love the music that we're making," Andrew said recently. "Not necessarily just about my music; just passionate people who love music."
It's hard to imagine anyone being more passionate about breakneck tempos, celebratory choruses and energetic sing-alongs than Mr. Wilkes-Krier, who embodied the term "party anthem" on 2001's I Get Wet. And, given the sincerity with which he speaks of its follow-up, September 9's The Wolf, it seems Andrew W.K. would be absolutely devastated if people didn't appreciate it.
"My main goal here is to satisfy people," he said. "It's not to shock or scare. It wasn't to be provocative — it was to be enjoyable and satisfying. And I really want to please people with this album and make them as happy as I can."
Those who enjoyed I Get Wet should be immediately attracted to The Wolf, as the album begins with a similar vibe. Swirling symphonic aggression combines with stomping rally calls and a punk anthem to pick up where the last album left off. Then it takes a turn toward fuller and more dynamic song structures for a sound closer to the arena-rock grandeur of late '70s/early '80s bands like Supertramp and Asia.
Andrew, naturally, has his own unique way of conveying the 12-track album's progression from familiar to uncharted territory. "You kind of start out on the road and you're driving along thinking, 'I love this part of town. There's that store I love. There's that old corner I used to hang out on. There's my school. Oh, there's my friend; I love that guy.'
"And then you keep driving. 'Whoa, this is a part of town I've never been to.' And then you drive some more and you're like, 'Where am I? What's going on? This is insane.' And before you know it, you're driving through space."
Though "Never Let Down" will serve as album's radio single, the two-disc CD/DVD single "Tear It Up" is scheduled to drop two months before the album. Due July 15, the package will include the LP's songs "Tear It Up" and "Your Rules" on the audio disc and live performance footage plus all Andrew W.K.'s videos — "Party Hard," "She Is Beautiful" and "We Want Fun" among them — on the DVD.
The song "Tear It Up," like most things surrounding Andrew W.K., can be interpreted a variety of ways. "You can tear up a piece of paper," he began rambling. "You can tear up an orange or banana peel. For me, it was about making noise music. It's about being really excited about what we're doing now ... most of all, as always, having a lot of fun.
"It's also about regretting things and also wanting to learn from things," he continued, growing more excited with each sentence. "When you do something that maybe wasn't the best thing to do at the time, you don't want to hold onto those feelings of guilt, shame or embarrassment, as much as you'd like to learn from them. So it's a little bit about that conflict."
And just when it appears that one is able to grasp his meaning, Andrew returns to form. "It's also a little bit about tumbling ... trundling ... somewhat about bundling, but that's more subtle. You know, it's got a very heavy tempo. And that's the thing that's most exciting to me."
See what "Tear It Up" and other selections from The Wolf are all about when Andrew channels his excitement onstage at the Vans Warped Tour, which he'll ride until the July 31 stop in Brockton, Massachusetts.