Bon Iver's new 13-track album i,i will be out on August 30. After drip-feeding three tracks ahead of its release, the group spent Thursday (August 8) slowly releasing the remaining ones ahead of schedule: "iMi," "We," "Holyfields," "Naeem," "Marion," "Salem," "Sh'Diah," and "RABi." That's a lot of new music — in fact, it's the entire rest of the album. Exploring these tracks is like trekking through different childhood memories. There's warmth, chilling temperatures, rising dread, and unexplainable happiness.
The song "iMi" features James Blake, Aaron Dessner of The National and Big Red Machine, and others. It's fuzzy and heartfelt with voices laid on voices, an evocative glimpse into the ethereal. Next comes "We," which sounds like the wind in a mountainous cavern. "Holyfields," with Wye Oak's Jenn Wasner and more, is blissfully naked and soul-stirring, amiable with floating vocals that stretch towards infinity. "Naeem," which features Bryan Dessner, Spank Rock, and others, is a cresting dawn sun on the distant country horizon thanks to Vernon's windy vocals.
"Marion" is extremely simple and clean and begs to be played around campfires, with marshmallows impaled on sticks. The witchy atmosphere of "Salem" is next, with its warm, bubbly techno-influenced setting. Most recently, Vernon released "Sh'Diah" that retains this warmth and innocence, transitioning from the campfire to the morning sun, when preparing to go hiking by the river. "RABi" is a glowing ember built from a slow creeping guitar line and background shakers.
Bon Iver previously released three tracks, "Hey Ma," "U (Man Like)," and "Jelmore" in June that will appear on the forthcoming album. On August 31, a day after the LP drops, they will be heading out on tour in support of it.
Listen to the rest of Bon Iver's i,i tracks up above.