Feature, News, Reviews

Ratboys Share New Single “Morning Zoo” & Announce First Ever Headline European/UK Tour- New Album “The Window” due August 25th via Topshelf Records

August 14, 2023
Photo credit: Alexa Viscius

RATBOYS

Share new single “Morning Zoo”
Announce first ever headline European/UK tour  
Album ‘The Window’ due August 25th via Topshelf Records

Chicago’s beloved Ratboys will release their new album, ‘The Window‘, on August 25th via Topshelf Records. Today, they share Morning Zoo,” which opens with a quick cascade of drums and swelling violin by Abby Gundersen. As Julia Steiner sings about battling anxiety, her vocals have never sounded so weighty and strong, reminding us the never-ending fight is worth it: “Talk to myself all the time // Waiting on the long train // The Devil’s right behind // Stuck in the passing lane // How long does it take // To find the peace that I want?” The band have also just announced a European tour for later this year with UK shows in November. 

“The lyrics are meant to express the frustration and confusion that comes along with hanging out at a personal crossroads, where every day feels the same and the same big questions keep nagging at you from the back of your head,” says Steiner. “It’s that small, lingering feeling of numb indecision, of pesky anxiety- like disassociating at a stop sign or weighing all your biggest hopes and fears while stuck behind the longest freight train you’ve ever seen.”

Not long until one of the most highly anticipated album releases comes to light and we are sure the Ratboys fan collective is counting down the days.

This rapid drum fill initiates the track proceedings and leads the way to highly infectious instrumentation. Country-tinged textures emit from the tonal choices of the guitar and the cymbal hits triumphantly lift up the complex structure as Steiner’s emotive vocal harmonies glide through the soundscape with such ease.  With the new single the band displays this power to alter their atmosphere, play with their direction and keep you mesmerized by the consistent melody, the harmonious vocal delivery and the immense range of affection that emits from each attribute.

Ratboys are creating some of the most moving arrangments exuding their wholly unique character and a wealth of hooks.

Julia Steiner (vocals, guitar), Sean Neumann (bass), Marcus Nuccio (drums), and Dave Sagan (guitars) have an electric connection amongst each other. As championed throughout The Window’s singles, “Black Earth, WI,” “It’s Alive!,” “The Window,” and “Crossed That Line,” the album captures that kinetic energy. The Window is Ratboys as they were always meant to be heard – expansive while still intimate, audacious while still tender – the sound of four friends operating as a single, cohesive unit. 

To make The Window, Ratboys traveled outside their home base of Chicago to record an album for the first time ever, journeying to Seattle to work with producer Chris Walla (Death Cab for Cutie, Tegan and Sara, Foxing) for three weeks. The sessions struck the perfect balance between preparation and experimentation. Walla’s studio sensibilities pushed Ratboys to stretch and expand their vision, adding unexpected elements and instruments like rototoms, talkboxes, and fiddles. Hunting for sonic inspiration, Walla and the band sometimes spent hours just listening to their favorite albums, spinning everything from Sloan to Brainiac to The Roches. Ratboys will begin their NA tour in September and will then head to Europe for their first-ever headline shows overseas. They will be touring throughout November with UK dates in Brighton, Glasgow, Manchester, Bristol and London before heading over to the rest of the Europe. 

Ratboys tour dates:
Wed. Aug. 23 – Chicago, IL @ Big Kids – Listening Party
Fri. Aug. 25 – Chicago, IL @ Schubas Tavern – SOLD OUT
Thu. Sep. 21 – Champaign-Urbana, IL @ Pygmalion Festival
Fri. Sep. 22 – Columbus, OH @ Rumba Cafe *
Sat. Sep. 23 – Washington, DC @ Songbyrd *
Tue. Sep. 26 – Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brenda’s *
Wed. Sep. 27 – New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom *
Thu. Sep. 28 – Boston, MA @ Brighton Music Hall *
Fri. Sep. 29 – Montreal, QC @ POP Montreal ^
Sat. Sep. 30 – Toronto, ON @ Monarch Tavern ^
Mon. Oct. 2 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Bottlerocket Social Hall *
Tue. Oct. 3 – Cleveland, OH @ No Class *
Wed. Oct. 4 – Ferndale, MI @ Magic Bag *
Fri. Oct. 6 – St. Paul, MN @ Turf Club *
Sat. Oct. 7 – Milwaukee, WI @ The Back Room at Colectivo Coffee *
Thu. Oct. 19 – Omaha, NE @ Reverb &
Sat. Oct. 21 – Denver, CO @ Globe Hall &
Sun. Oct. 22 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court &
Tue. Oct. 24 – Seattle, WA @ Madame Lou’s &
Wed. Oct. 25 – Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios &
Fri. Oct. 27 – San Francisco, CA @ Cafe du Nord &
Sat. Oct. 28 – Los Angeles, CA @ Lodge Room Highland Park &
Sun. Oct. 29 – San Diego, CA @ The Loft at UC San Diego &
Mon. Oct. 30 – Santa Ana, CA @ Constellation Room &
Tue. Oct. 31 – Phoenix, AZ @ Valley Bar &
Thu. Nov. 2 – San Antonio, TX @ Paper Tiger &
Fri. Nov. 3 – Austin, TX @ Empire Control Room & Garage &
Sat. Nov. 4 – Dallas, TX @ Club Dada &
Mon. Nov. 13 Brighton, UK @ Zahara
Wed. Nov. 15 Glasgow, UK @ Hug & Pint
Thu. Nov. 16 Manchester, UK @ YES Basement
Fri. Nov. 17. Bristol, UK @ Rough Trade
Sun. Nov. 19 London, UK @ Omeara
Mon. Nov. 20 Paris, FR @ L’International
Tue. Nov. 21 Antwerp, BE @ Bouckenborgh
Wed. Nov. 22 Utrecht, NL @ Ekko
Thu. Nov. 23 Amsterdam, NL @ Paradiso
Fri. Nov. 24 Cologne, DE @ Yard Club
Sat. Nov. 25 Hamburg, DE @ Nochtwache
Sun. Nov. 26 Copenhagen, DK @ Vega
Tue. Nov. 28 Berlin, DE @ Privatclub
Thu. Nov. 30 Darmstadt, DE @ Oetinger Villa

Fri. Dec. 22 – Chicago, IL @ Thalia Hall •
* =w/ Free Range     & =w/ Another Michael     ^ =w/ Ellis      • =w/ Disq

The Window tracklist:
1. Making Noise for the Ones You Love
2. Morning Zoo
3. Crossed that Line
4. It’s Alive!
5. No Way
6. The Window
7. Empty
8. Break
9. Black Earth, WI
10. I Want You (Fall 2010)

https://ratboys.bandcamp.com/

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