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M. Ward announces new album, plots North American tour

By ; January 23, 2012 at 12:03 PM 

Although M. Ward hasn’t released a solo album since 2009′s Hold Time, we haven’t exactly been short of new material from the crooner since he released albums as She & Him and Monsters of Folk in the meantime. Admittedly, 2011 was a quiet year for Ward, just playing a handful of shows, but now we know why: he was working on his new album.

The album is called A Wasteland Companion and comes out on April 10th through Merge; the cover art is above.

Although this will be seen and reported as a solo album, Ward enlisted a bunch of help to get it recorded. 18 other musicians feature on A Wasteland Companion to add everything from vocals to bass to percussion to strings to marimba on various track. The most notable names are Zooey Deschanel, PJ Harvey-collaborator John Parish, Bright Eyes’ Mike Mogis, Dr. Dog’s Tobey Leaman and Sonic Youth drummer Steve Shelley.

As we mentioned at the top of the article, Ward has been busy since Hold Time, and it is apparently his activities in that time that have inspired A Wastlenad Companion. Ward says of the album:

“Between now and when I made Hold Time there has been a lot of traveling which requires a lot of reckoning with what to leave behind and what to carry – material and otherwise – and thinking about what I want versus what I need, creatively and otherwise. I wanted to get a reflection of that on the album. It was a process of stripping away my security blanket, which is the same four walls I always record in.”

Check out M. Ward’s April tour below and the track list for the album beneath.

M. Ward tour dates:

Feb 2 Los Angeles, CA Masonic Lodge at Hollywood Forever Cemetery
Apr 11 San Francisco, CA The Fillmore
Apr 12 Santa Cruz, CA The Cocoanut Grove Ballroom
Apr 13 Indio, CA Coachella **SOLD OUT**
Apr 14 Santa Barbara, CA SoHO
Apr 16 San Diego, CA Belly Up
Apr 17 Phoenix, AZ Crescent Ballroom
Apr 18 Flagstaff, AZ The Orpheum
Apr 20 Indio, CA Coachella **SOLD OUT**
May 5 Portland, ME State Theatre
May 6 Burlington, VT Higher Ground
May 7 New Haven, CT Toads Place
May 8 Boston, MA House of Blues
May 11 New York, NY Webster Hall
May 12 Philadelphia, PA Union Transfer
May 13 Washington, DC 9:30 Club
May 15 Durham, NC Duke Performances at Page Auditorium
May 16 Athens, GA Georgia Theatre
May 17 Atlanta, GA Buckhead Theatre
May 22 Chicago, IL Vic Theatre
May 24 Minneapolis, MN First Avenue

A Wasteland Companion track list:

01. Clean Slate (for Alex & El Goodo)
02. Primitive Girl
03. Me And My Shadow
04. Sweetheart
05. I Get Ideas
06. The First Time I Ran Away
07. A Wasteland Companion
08. Watch The Show
09. There’s A Key
10. Crawl After You
11. Wild Goose
12. Pure Joy


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