Luke Lalonde, acclaimed lead singer of indie-rock mainstays, Born Ruffians released a second single, “Dusty Lime“, today from his upcoming sophomore solo album The Perpetual Optimist, sharing a video via YouTube. The Perpetual Optimist will arrive November 22 via Paper Bag Records/Warp Publishing. Lalonde will perform live next Tuesday, November 12 at Paste Studio Live in Atlanta, 1:30pm EST.
In his time with the Ruffians and over five full-length records, Lalonde has become known as a prolific solo writer in his own right, collaborating with a variety of artists across several genres, including Caribou. In 2012, he released his debut solo effort, Rhythymnals, which found Lalonde exploring a more electronic space, moving from his signature New Wave howl to a more echoey, crooning pure-pop sensibility. The release was met with notable acclaim, with critics drawing attention to the impressive breadth of Lalonde’s creative capacity.
The Perpetual Optimist is steeped in observational concern for the slowly progressing environmental erosion that threatens all life. Lalonde finds a lyrical voice on the largely jangly, lo-fi, Americana-infused tracks, juxtaposed against pretty instrumental moments, providing breaths of fresh air amongst the perceived chaos. It is a record shaped as much by his own musical upbringing as it is by the frenetic world around him. He writes with a more pointed perspective than ever, addressing 2019’s most pressing issues: the escalating threat of climate change, connection in the face of manic uncertainty, and mortality.
Luke explained: Recently I’ve been worrying a lot. I think a lot of people have. There’s a lot of bad things happening out there. I worry mostly about the planet, and the animals living on it. I worry that we humans, so prone to consume and destroy, do more evil than good. I think our planet is God and she is attempting to buck us off now. But I also worry about myself. I worry about the people I love, and about innumerable inane things throughout my day that eclipse the fact that we’re undergoing a mass extinction event. I don’t know if we’re equipped to comprehend an apocalypse that moves so slowly. Or maybe we’re all just wired with a firebrand optimism. That’s what the record is about, more or less. My pen hovers above the page and I think about humanity in the 21st century, suspended on a wire in a hurricane.