Texas-based band Midlake released their new single “Bethel Woods” and accompanying music video on Wednesday, January 12.
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Recently named in The Guardian’s “Pop, Rock and Classical Music To Look Forward To In 2022,” Midlake made their grand return after nearly a decade away. The group’s new single precedes the release of their long-awaited upcoming fifth studio album, For The Sake Of Bethel Woods, to be released on Friday, March 18.
The band’s latest single is named after the site of the original 1969 Woodstock festival field, “Bethel Woods,” and inspired by a photo of keyboardist Jesse Chandler’s dad, Dave, sitting in the massive crowd.
The photo, pulled from the 1970 Woodstock documentary, also inspired the album’s cover art which was designed by pro skateboarder/filmmaker/visual artist Brian Lotti. At just 16 years old at the time of the photo, Dave had hitchhiked over 100 miles from Ridgewood, New Jersey to the festival with his friend.
Dave passed tragically in 2018 and Midlake’s Eric Pulido said the band was moved to write the song following his death and wanted to capture the essence of beings returning to peace.
“For me, the picture of that kid, my dad, forever frozen in time, encapsulates what it means to be in the throes of impressionable and fleeting youth, and all that the magic of music, peace, love, and communion bring to it, whether one knows it at the time or not (I think he knew it),” Chandler said.
The music video was directed by filmmaker Brantley Gutierrez (Paul McCartney, Tom Petty, and the Heartbreakers, Diplo) and stars acclaimed actor Michael Peña (The Shield, Narcos, Ant-Man and the Wasp). This video was created as a take on the classic ghost story, emphasizing the journey of returning to a place of memories.
“The concept of emotional attachment to the people and the memories in those places, what the confusion might feel like for those who have passed on,” Gutierrez said.
The album release will be accompanied by a world tour, with European and UK headline dates beginning March 16 in Gothenburg, Sweden. North American headline dates begin May 8 at 3rd & Lindsley in Nashville, Tennessee.
For The Sake Of Bethel Woods is now available for pre-order on all digital service platforms and streaming services.
Photo by Barbara FG / Big Hassle Media