Folk-punk singer Frank Turner announces new album and tour - including North East date
Frank Turner has announced a new album - and an accompanying UK tour, including a North East date.
The 36-year-old will play at the O2 Academy in Newcastle on Sunday, April 22, as part of the tour for Be More Kind, which will be released on May 4 through Xtra Mile Recordings/Polydor Records.
It comes just months after the release of Songbook, a career-spanning retrospective which also saw reworked versions of tracks from across the past decade.
The record represents a thematic and sonic line in the sand for Turner, with the intricate folk and punk roar trademarks of Turner’s his imbued with new, bold experimental shades.
“I wanted to try and get out of my comfort zone and do something different,” said Turner.
The singer and his band, the Sleeping Souls, were on tour in the USA in 2016 “when the world decided to go collectively nuts” and the songs that make up Be More Kind started to come together.
“Somewhere in the record, there’s a convergence of the ideas of personal and political, which is a central theme of the album,” Turner says.
One of the driving themes of the album is empathy, even for your enemy. “You should at least be able to inhabit the mental universe of the people you disagree with. If you can’t do that, then how do you communicate with people other than through force of arms, which is something we all agree is a bad idea?”
The first track to be released from Be More Kind is 1933, a clattering, state-of-the-nation anthem, inspired by articles that suggested the alt-right was punk rock, which Tyurner says "filled me with a mixture of incredulity and anger".
The Be More Kind World Tour will begin in April, with its first leg playing to over 200,000 people across the UK, the USA, Europe, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, taking them through to Christmas.
Turner promises that 2019 will include visits to some “slightly more weird and wonderful places.”
“My days of being engaged in an arms race to be the hardest touring musician in the universe are behind me now,” he says. “We’re going to tour hard but come home regularly in the middle of it.”