In the half-decade since the last Shins album, singer James Mercer has parted
company with every member of the 2007 lineup, recorded an album with Danger Mouse and even done a bit of acting.
Clearly, a lot has changed, but now that
the band is streaming the brand-new 'Simple Song' (listen below), it seems one
thing remains the same: Mercer still isn't writing simple songs.
from 'Port of Morrow,' the band's long-awaited fourth album, 'Simple Song' is
classic Shins: catchy yet convoluted. This one's a little less ambiguous than,
say, 'Phantom Limb,' the lead-off single from 2007's 'Wincing the Night Away,'
but even as Mercer seemingly aims for straightforward statements about love and
hope, he can't resist the urge to get a little weird.
Musically, the new-jack Shins mix bright keyboards and
sparkling guitars, backing Mercer with the same gusto of his old cohorts. As for
what they do on the other nine tracks, fans will have to wait until March, when
'Port of Morrow' arrives via Mercer's own Aural Apothecary label, to find
out. ~ Spinner Online