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Thundercat announces new album, It Is What It Is

By | Published on Monday 20 January 2020


Thundercat has rounded up an impressive list of collaborators for his new album ‘It Is What It Is’, not least Flying Lotus, with whom he co-produced the LP. Meanwhile, other contributions come from Ty Dolla $ign, Childish Gambino, Lil B, Kamasi Washington, Steve Lacy, Steve Arrington, BadBadNotGood, Louis Cole and Zack Fox.

“This album is about love, loss, life and the ups and downs that come with that”, says Thundercat himself, real name Stephen Lee Bruner. “It’s a bit tongue-in-cheek, but at different points in life you come across places that you don’t necessarily understand… some things just aren’t meant to be understood”.

The album’s first single, ‘Black Qualls’, sees him team up with The Internet’s Steve Lacy and legendary funk musician Steve Arrington, the latter a big influence on Bruner as a teenager. “The tone of the bass, the way his stuff feels and moves, it resonated through my whole body”, he says.

As for Lacy, Bruner says he is “the physical incarnate of the Ohio Players in one person – he genuinely is a funky ass dude”.

So that’s a whole load of praise for his collaborators on the single, and we haven’t yet mentioned that the album version of the track will feature Childish Gambino too. You’ll be able to hear that, and the rest of the LP, when it comes out on 3 Apr through Brainfeeder.

Thundercat will also be playing live in the UK following the album’s release, with a show at the Roundhouse in London on 9 Apr and at the Manchester Academy on 11 Apr.

Now, check out the single version of ‘Black Qualls’ here: