“Palehound’s Ellen Kempner has spent the past four years building up one of the most distinct styles in indie rock.” – Rolling Stone, “Song You Need to Know”
“Palehound’s Ellen Kempner has established herself as a prolific and distinguished voice in indie rock, winning over fans with her razor-sharp technique and poignant lyricism.” – NPR
“Few things destroy me quite like a whisper-sung, honest, narrative Palehound track, especially when it relates directly to bodily discomfort.“ – Jezebel
” …emanates with persistent compassion, an invitation to embrace transformation of all types.” –FADER
“sweet and sincere, empathetic and hopelessly devoted to letting everyone be their best self.” – Stereogum
Boston-based trio Palehound have shared the title track ‘Black Friday’ from their highly-anticipated album Black Friday due out next Friday, June 7 on Remote Control Records.
On the quietly hypnotic new track, prolific singer/songwriter Ellen Kempner captures the specific ache of uneven emotional investment between friends, framing her plaintive acceptance in particularly barbed lyrics (“You’re Black Friday and I’m going to the mall”). Kempner also shared insight on her songwriting influences for the LP including Tierra Whack, Prince, Alex G, and Big Thief, with a special FLOOD Magazine playlist.
Kempner explains the song is, “About how fucked up it is that we’re all conditioned to feel we need to compete against others to get what we want. How success is measured in who you’re above and who you’re below. This one is framed through a specific relationship where you feel like you’re investing more into a person than they are in you, and that you feel you need to compete for their attention and love.”
The third full-length from Palehound is a finespun exploration of all the forms that love can take: love between friends, love for people no longer in your life, love in the face of self-hate, love that endures through major life changes or through many tiny catastrophes. With Black Fridaybuilding off the emotional complexity of its predecessor, Palehound hope that the album might help others to work through their own troubles in life and love of all kinds. “Making music’s always been a therapeutic thing for me—that’s such a big part of the reason why I do it in the first place,” says Kempner. “What I always want to do with my songs is to help people heal in some way, or come to some new understanding about whatever it is that they’re going through. Even if it’s just hearing a song and feeling less alone than they were before, that would mean so much to me.”
Kempner previously showcased her thoughtful narrative voice and lyrical finesse on ‘Worthy’, speaking to the challenge of navigating self-confidence issues in relationships.. Palehound announced Black Friday alongside lead single/video ‘Aaron,’ a song Kempner wrote for her partner in the midst of his transitioning process, and previously shared ‘Killer’ which debuted via NPR All Songs Considered.
Palehound examine the intricacies of friendship and partnership all throughout Black Friday, handling the subject with a level of attention rarely found in pop songs. Co-produced by Kempner and Gabe Wax(Beirut, Soccer Mommy), she and her bandmates Jesse Weiss (drums) and Larz Brogan (bass) recorded at Panoramic House in Stinson Beach, California, tracking most of the songs live and breathing a new vitality into Palehound’s elegantly detailed sound.