Australian metalcore band Northlane pulled a Beyoncé and dropped surprise fourth album Mesmer on fans early Friday morning.
“Through determination, hard work, sacrifice and a bit of luck, we are able to travel the world taking our music to fans both old and new,” the band explained in a Facebook post. “We’re able to spend time crafting the music we want to hear with the benefit of not having to leave the studio early to go and work a job. To an artist these are real luxuries. We appreciate them more than anything and we’re in the position of being able to do this because of you – our incredible fans who continue to support us. You free us to be the artists we want to be.
“Because of this, we have decided to put out this record in a way that means our fans will hear it the second they know it exists.”
The album’s name comes from 18th century German scientist Franz Anton Mesmer, who developed a theory called animal magnetism – the idea that there’s a transference of energy between all living things.
“While it’s been debunked, I thought [the theory] was really interesting,” guitarist Josh Smith told Alt Press. “It obviously also has the connotation of being mesmerized. The record kind of started with a lot of songs about existential topics.”
Smith has also shared a terrific track by track guide to the album with teamrock.com that offers unique insight into the effort.
“Savage is my favorite song on the record,” he explained. “It’s very existential, and I wrote it after watching 2001: A Space Odyssey. It’s about human nature and how we’ve taken our eyes off what’s really important and focused on fighting between ourselves, rather than banding together. I watched a documentary called Overview, which was talking about astronauts and their experience when they’re able to view the planet from outer space and see a world without borders – how it completely changes their paradigm on who we are as humanity and we are one species. We’re quite often distracted from that intrinsic fact. This song’s really addressing that.”
Recorded in New Jersey with producer David Bendeth, Mesmer can be streamed for free here and includes previously released tracks “Intuition” and “Citizen.”