To put it simply, the Shins have a new song. And that song is called "Simple Song." It's a taster of their upcoming album Port of Morrow (out March 20), and it'll be the record's first single as well. It's streaming right now on the Shins site, and it's a grabby, sparkly pop song with immaculate but not overglossed production. James Mercer hits some of the highest notes—as well as the lowest—he's ever hit over the course of its careening melody. On first listen, I think it's probably the best Shins tune I've heard since Chutes Too Narrow.
Here's some more info on Port of Morrow:
Port of Morrow was recorded in Los Angeles and Portland over the course of 2011 with Mercer customarily handling all songwriting duties, lead vocals, guitar, lap steel, percussion and glockenspiel. The record was produced by Greg Kurstin, who also contributes keys, guitar and bass on various tracks, and mixed by Rich Costey. Other musicians featured on the album include Joe Plummer, Janet Weiss, Dave Hernandez, Marty Crandall, Eric D. Johnson, Ron Lewis and Nik Freitas. The album's cover art was created by Jacob Escobedo.Looks like it will include the work of Shins past (Hernandez, Crandall, Johnson) and present, plus a few special guests (Weiss, Frietas) for good measure.
Listen to the new Shins here. (Go to the site and hit the play button.)