Today alt-pop trailblazers Kero Kero Bonito — a.k.a. Sarah Midori Perry / Sarah Bonito, Gus Lobban and Jamie Bulled — release their new EP Civilisation II, the long-awaited follow-up to 2019’s Civilisation I. Out today via Polyvinyl, Civilisation II sees the band continue to explore instinctive human tendencies through other-worldly alternate-realities and dystopian concepts. The three tracks of the EP were completely devised using vintage hardware, written in both Japanese and English, and inspired by the likes of early ambassadors of art-pop such as Kate Bush, David Byrne, Bjork and Ryuichi Sakamoto.
To celebrate the release of Civilisation II, KKB shares a video for the second single off of the EP, “21/04/20,” with a video directed by Dan W. Jacobs.
KKB says of the EP: “Civilisation II is the sequel to our 2019 EP Civilisation I. Like it’s predecessor, Civilisation II explores lost world art pop, made entirely with old synthesisers and assorted junk in our quest to realise a fantastical parallel timeline for pop music, with lyrics encompassing religion, our society and the environment.
Each of Civilisation II‘s three tracks are set in the past, present and future respectively. “The Princess and the Clock” (past) is a legend of our own invention, designed to feel like a familiar folk tale. It tells the story of a young explorer who was kidnapped and revered as a princess by an isolated society; her worshippers later found her gone, but it’s up to the listener to guess her fate. “21/04/20” (present) recounts a typical day in the early Covid lockdown in Bromley (South London), complete with a late leftover pasta breakfast, enthusiastic joggers and friendship conducted over video call. Its direct, documentary style was inspired by narrative art like the Bayeux Tapestry and Trajan’s Column. “Well Rested” (future), our longest track yet at over seven minutes, addresses The Resurrection and humanity’s distant future. It’s a humanist manifesto for the Anthropocene in several parts incorporating chants, an insistent four-to-the-floor and field recordings of natural sites.
The Civilisation era, with its conflation of time on the grandest scale, is a bridge between our more personal 2018 album Time ‘n’ Place and KKB’s next move. Whatever that may be, don’t forget: You Cannot Stop Civilisation.”
The release of “21/04/20” follows the EP’s lead single “The Princess and The Clock,” a lively experimental-pop anthem about old-time mythology, with the lyrics recounting a fictional tale of a princess who is kidnapped while sailing the world.