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Car Seat Headrest album recalled to remove uncleared Cars sample

By | Published on Monday 16 May 2016

Car Seat Headrest

Matador Records has recalled physical copies of Car Seat Headrest’s new album ‘Teens Of Denial’ just before its release, thanks to what everyone thought was a cleared sample of ‘Just What I Needed’ by The Cars turning out not to be.

“We were so inspired by Radiohead and Beyonce’s recent success with surprise albums outta-the-blue that we decided to do the REVERSE with Car Seat Headrest’s hotly anticipated ‘Teens Of Denial'”, joked the label. “Instead, we’re pulling the LP and CD versions from circulation on the eve of the album’s release. OK, sorry. The real story is a little more complicated and a lot more of a hassle. We’d love to blame it on someone else, but for once, we can’t”.

The album was due to be released this week, and had been distributed to retailers, the label having negotiated a licence to sample the Cars composition by Ric Ocasek “in good faith months ago, only to be told last week that the publisher involved was not authorised to complete the licence in the United States”. Sadly, not only was the sample uncleared, but Ocasek “preferred that his work not be included in the song”. Which, I’m sure you can see, is a bit of a problem.

In his own statement, Will Toledo – he who is Car Seat Headrest – explained that while physical copies of the album will now not be available until later this year, the digital release will still come out as planned. Toledo has quickly reworked his track without the Cars sample and retitled it ‘Not What I Needed’.

“It’s not merely an edit – it is its own thing, about half a minute longer than the original track, and goes in a much different direction”, he said. “Honestly, despite the apparent clusterfuck, I had fun doing it, and I think it’s a stronger song now. In any case I’ve grown up accustomed to working on an album right up to its drop date, so this is not a freak-out scenario for me. The album is going to come out on time and it’s going to be good”.

Car Seat Headrest will be touring the UK next month, which will help take his mind off this whole thing. Here are the dates to take your mind off it now:

20 Jun: Brighton, The Hope
21 Jun: London, 100 Club
22 Jun: Manchester, The Deaf Institute
23 Jun: Glasgow, Broadcast