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Kae Tempest Details 'The Line Is A Curve' LP, Drops New Song More Pressure Featuring Kevin Abstract

Monday, 10 January 2022 Written by Jon Stickler

Photo: Wolfgang Tillmans

Kae Tempest has announced their fourth studio album.

'The Line Is A Curve' will arrive on April 8 via American Recordings/Republic Records and feature the newly unveiled single More Pressure.

The synthy groove is guided by the Lewisham-based artist's razor-sharp lyricism, assisted by Kevin Abstract of hip hop group Brockhampton. Discussing the song during a new interview with NME, Tempest said:

"More Pressure is the second to last song on the album. This is the song that the whole album builds towards in some ways, because what it says is that we can reframe some of the stresses that we find ourselves under as possibilities for new growth, new resilience, a new acceptance – a new level of energy can come from enormous amounts of pressure.

"For me it’s an uplifting song, and it’s a shift in focus from some of the heavier themes that appear on the album. So I thought it was a good song to start with. Plus, there are just good vibes."

Commenting on the record, they added: "'The Line Is A Curve' is about letting go. Of shame, anxiety, isolation and falling instead into surrender. Embracing the cyclical nature of time, growth, love. This letting go can hopefully be felt across the record. In the musicality, the instrumentation, the lyricism, the delivery, the cover art. In the way it ends where it begins and begins where it ends. I knew I wanted my face on the sleeve. Throughout the duration of my creative life, I have been hungry for the spotlight and desperately uncomfortable in it. For the last couple of records, I wanted to disappear completely from the album covers, the videos, the front-facing aspects of this industry. A lot of that was about my shame but I masked it behind a genuine desire for my work to speak for itself, without me up front, commodifying what felt so rare to me and sacred. I was, at times, annoyed that in order to put the work out, I had to put myself out. But this time around, I understand it differently. I want people to feel welcomed into this record, by me, the person who made it, and I have let go of some of my airier concerns. I feel more grounded in what I’m trying to do, who I am as an artist and as a person and what I have to offer. I feel less shame in my body because I am not hiding from the world anymore. I wanted to show my face, and I dreamed of it being Wolfgang Tillmans who took the portrait."

In addition to Abstract, the record also includes guest spots from the likes of Grian Chatten of Fontaines D.C., Lianne La Havas, and Confucius MC. It was produced by longtime collaborator Dan Carey with executive production by Rick Rubin.

Tempest's last studio record was 2019's 'The Book Of Traps & Lessons'. In the interim, their play Paradise premiered at London's National Theatre in 2021.

'The Line Is A Curve' tracklist:

1. Priority Boredom
2. I Saw Light (with Grian Chatten)
3. Nothing To Prove
4. No Prizes (with Lianne La Havas)
5. Salt Coast
6. Don’t You Ever
7. These Are The Days
8. Smoking (with Confucius MC)
9. Water In The Rain
10. Move
11. More Pressure (with Kevin Abstract)
12. Grace


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