Exitmusic will release their highly anticipated full-length album The Recognitions on April 20 via felte.
The Recognitions is available to pre-order now on limited edition vinyl, CD and digitally at Bandcamp.
NPR’s Mike Katzif on the album:
Exitmusic has resurfaced with The Recognitions, the band’s long-awaited follow-up and what is likely its final album. Recorded amidst the slow dissipation of their marriage and after their separation, the album was put on the back-burner due to the fraught circumstances between the two, and it sat unfinished until Church and Palladino were emotionally ready to revisit and complete what’s now a post-mortem musical statement.
The nine songs unwind like a melodramatic love story pulling apart bit by bit.
Told with elliptical and evocative imagery that coaxes open-ended interpretation, The Recognitions frequently alludes to straying feelings and breaches of trust, depicting two people growing apart when that initial crackle of attraction and affection dims.
Exitmusic is Aleksa Palladino and Devon Church who craft dream pop that is as emotional as it is ethereal.
Aleksa is also an actress who has starred in Halt and Catch Fire, The Sopranos, Boardwalk Empire and is presently filming a role alongside Robert de Niro on Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman while Devon is currently working on a solo album.
While many couples can trace the real time rise and fall of their relationship back to social media feeds and harried phone calls, Aleksa Palladino and Devon Church have channeled the highs and lows of their storybook courtship into something else entirely: the explosive, discomforting confessionals of Exitmusic.
The mercurial project started the year they got married (2004) and all-but-imploded during their recent divorce, but not before the duo wrapped its most fully realized collection of beautifully damaged music yet titled The Recognitions.
It wasn’t easy, though, for the band has always had to balance its writing and recording sessions with Palladino’s career as an actress on acclaimed television shows, art-house films such as Storytelling and Sidney Lumet’s final movie, Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead.
“We essentially grew up together,” adds Aleksa, “but it became very clear that we needed to do it alone now. It was the hardest realization I’ve had in my life, but there was so much energy propelling me; it was almost elemental, like how the earth crashes into itself and forms mountains.”
That feeling makes itself known right from the very beginning of The Recognitions, as “Crawl” abruptly shifts from a sinister-but-subdued intro—think: Beach House re-scoring Suspiria—to a full-on exorcism, a fearless, fang-baring fight for one’s life that leaves a trail of blood, sweat, and tears behind.
Things slow down slightly amid the quivering strings, bold shuffleboard beats, and minor-key melodies of “Iowa,” but there’s no denying what a wildly expressive diary entry this album is by its end. That goes for everything from the bittersweet piano balladry of “The Distance” to the queasy rhythms and delirious hooks of “Criminal.”
“The word ‘recognition’ has a lot of associations for me,” says Church. “I remember when I first came to New York City and fell in love with Aleksa; I told her I felt like I ‘recognized’ her. Then of course there was the recognitions implied by the breakup, and the unravelling of a story we’ve been telling each other for 12 years. And I’m also really interested in Gnostic-type mystical practice, which centers on a kind of ‘amanuensis’ or unforgetting of true reality.”
“‘Recognitions’ has always meant the realization of painful truths for me,” adds ll. “I thought releasing the record was the only way to let it all go—the final act, the last thing we made together.
This album captures that change, the lapse of time in leaving one life to the next, which is what Exitmusic always represented.”
The Recognitions Track Listing
2. Iowa (stream)
4. Gold Coast
5. To The Depths
6. I’ll Never Know (stream)
8. Trumpets Fade (stream)
9. The Distance (stream)