Mumford & Sons have been premiering songs off their upcoming Babel album for nearly as long as they've been working on it, usually at stops on their seemingly endless tour schedule or during appearances at radio stations.
But late Tuesday (August 7), they broke from tradition by actually, totally, officially unveiling the first single off the album — "I Will Wait" — in a new video posted on their YouTube channel.
Of course, given that this is Mumford & Sons, this isn't the actual "I Will Wait" video ... instead, it's the "Official Audio" clip, one that unspools over footage of an endless stretch of highway (we told you they've been on tour forever) and teases their upcoming two-night stand at the iconic Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado. And yes, we're aware they've been playing the song during their recent run of U.S. shows. Though we suspect, for fans of the band, none of that really matters.
"I Will Wait" not only picks up where the band left off on their breakout debut, Sigh No More, but it polishes things up considerably. It is, in part, a rousing bluegrass tune, featuring plenty of bright banjo, but it also works horns, piano, stomping drums and soft-focus vocal harmonies into the mix. That all-in, organic scope seems to show the influence of the Nashville sessions the band shoe-horned in early last year, when they worked in a farmhouse and, as Marcus Mumford told MTV News, "had some friends who are musicians come play with us."
It also reflects the band's hectic life on the road — which helped shape the new album's sound, as Mumford also told MTV News.
"We write on the road in these hectic places with lots of people around," he explained. "And I suppose we've always put in ideas that we pick up from conversations with people, and things that we read and things that we listen to and feel."
"I Will Wait" is one of a dozen tracks on Babel, which is due in stores in the U.S. on September 25.
Take a listen to the official track from Mumford & Sons, and tell us what you think in the comments!