John Cale Announces ‘Mercy,’ First New Album of Originals in 10 Years

Founding member of The Velvet Underground, John Cale has announced his first new album of original songs in a decade.

Videos by American Songwriter

Over a 60-year career, all roads have led to Mercy as the multi-instrumentalist has continued to reimagine his sound with each new work. For this album, Cale enlists the help of young talents, like Animal Collective, Sylvan Esso, Laurel Halo, Tei Shi, and Actress.

Natalie Mering, better known as Weyes Blood, is another collaborator, lending her haunting vocals to the newly released, “Story of Blood.”

“I’d been listening to Weyes Blood’s latest record and remembered Natalie’s puritanical vocals,” Cale said of the collaboration. “I thought if I could get her to come and sing with me on the “Swing your soul” section, and a few other harmonies, it would be beautiful. What I got from her was something else! Once I understood the versatility in her voice, it was as if I’d written the song with her in mind all along.”

He continued, “Her range and fearless approach to tonality was an unexpected surprise. There’s even a little passage in there where she’s a dead-ringer for Nico.”

Check out “Story of Blood” below. The accompanying video was directed by Emmy-winner Jethro Waters. In the dark, yet spiritual; disturbing, but serene visual, both Cale and Mering are like two phantoms washed in a chilling red glow.

Mercy is set for release on Jan. 20, 2023.

Track List:

1. “Mercy” ft. Laurel Halo
2. “Marilyn Monroe’s Legs (Beauty Elsewhere)” ft. Actress
3. “Noise of You”
4. “Story of Blood” ft. Weyes Blood
5. “Time Stands Still” ft. Sylvan Esso
6. “Moonstruck (Nico’s Song)”
7. “Everlasting Days” ft. Animal Collective
8. “Night Crawling”
9. “Not the End of the World”
10. “The Legal Status of Ice” ft. Fat White Family
11. “I Know You’re Happy” ft. Tei Shi
12. “Out Your Window”

Photo credit: Madeline McManus / Pitch Perfect PR

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