black midi 2022
Photo credit: Atiba Jefferso

UK-based trio black midi are back with another new single this year featuring a psychedelic and dark animated music video. The group have also announced tour dates including a Los Angeles concert at the Wiltern for Sept. 24. Tickets go on sale to the general public on Friday, May 13 at 10am. Fans can access the presale on Thursday, May 14 at 10am by using the following ticket link and presale code: FINALE.

black midi’s new track ”Welcome to Hell” is an experimental blend of progressive rock, punk and trip hop sounds set to intense vocals that tell the story of a soldier’s shell shocked experiences after military leave. Delving into the vices and excess one might experience after getting out of service, the song is a guttural depiction of inter-personal and internal extremes – the consequences of participating in such intense activities, both in the army and after, turns the main character in ”Welcome to Hell” into something unrecognizable and twisted.

Instead of dealing with the immense emotional and mental trauma experienced during the military campaign, the lyrics track a story of repression and numbing the pain through extreme acts of debauchery.

 It’s accompanying video was directed by Gustaf Holtenäs (who also directed the video for black midi’s “Slow”). In it, animated soldiers infest a far away coastal town after a military campaign; men swarm the street, neon signs advertise anything and everything to blacken your soul as inebriation ties everything together in a messy, swirling nightmare.

The visual animation runs halfway between an anime series and Duncan Trussell’s Netflix show ”The Midnight Gospel” where imagery and dialogue never match up the way you would expect them to. The result is stark and mind blowing experience.

artist to watch in 2023

”Welcome to Hell” is the lead single for black midi’s upcoming album, Hellfire, out July 15th on Rough Trade, a first-person tale of morally devoid individuals making questionable choices at best and downright horrific ones at their worst. With biting monologues that pit us against our own preclusions of morality and plenty of intense rock instrumentals, Hellfire builds off of the intensity and straightforwardness of the band’s earlier work.

“Almost everyone depicted is a kind of scumbag,” says Geordie Greep, the band’s guitarist and vocalist. “Almost everything I write is from a true thing, something I experienced and exaggerated and wrote down. I don’t believe in Hell, but all that old world folly is great for songs, I’ve always loved movies and anything else with a depiction of Hell. Dante’s Inferno. When Homer goes to Hell in the Simpsons. There’s a robot Hell in Futurama. Isaac Bashevis Singer, a Jewish writer who portrays a Satan interfering in people’s lives. There’s loads!”

black midi is Geordie Greep (guitar, vocals), Cameron Picton (bass, vocals) and Morgan Simpson (drums). They will be performing across the globe with a North American tour starting in conjunction with their upcoming album release. Tickets go on sale to the public May 13, and five dates are set for California including: Sept 22 in Pomona at The Glass House; Sept. 23 in San Diego at the Music Box; Sept 24 in Los Angeles at The Wiltern Theatre; Sept. 27 in San Francisco at The Warfield Theatre; and Sept. 28 in Sacramento at Harlow’s.

Words: Patti Sanchez

For more on black midi, make sure to visit their website and follow them on Instagram.

black midi Tour Dates (North American dates in bold):
Tue. May 10 – Grenoble, FR @ La Bobine
Wed. May 11 – Milan, IT @ Santeria
Thu. May 12 – Zurich, CH @ Mascotte
Sat. May 14 – Vienna, AT @ Flex
Sun. May 15 – Prague, CR @ Meetfactory
Mon. May 16 – Berlin, DE @ Festsaal Kreuzberg
Wed. May 18 – Lille, FR @ Aeronef
Tue. May 31 – Istanbul, TR @ Zorlu PSM Jazz Festival
Thu. Jun. 2 – Barcelona, ES @ Primavera Sound
Thu. Jun. 9 – Porto, PT @ Primavera Sound
Sat. Jun. 11 – Mannheim, DE @ Maifeld Derby
Sun. Jun. 12 – Hilvarenbeek, NE @ Best Kept Secret
Thu. Jun. 17 – Sun. Jun. 19 – Vilnius, LT @ 8 Festival
Wed. Jun. 22 – Sun. Jun. 26 – Somerset, UK @ Glastonbury
Wed. Jun. 29 – Sun. Jul. 3 – Budapest, HU @ Kolorado Festival
Thu. Jun. 30 – Bucharest, RO @ Club Control
Fri. Jul. 1 – Sun. Jul. 3 – Plovdiv, BG @ Wrong Fest
Thu. Jul. 7 – Sat. Jul. 9 – Trencin, SK @ Pohoda
Wed. Jul. 13 – London, UK @ Summer Series at Somerset House
Wed. Jul. 13 – Sun. Jul. 17 – Dour, BE @ Dour Festival
Fri. Jul. 15 –  Riga, LV @ Positivus Festival
Fri. Jul. 29 – Puglia, IT @ Sud Est Indipendente,
Fri. Aug. 12 –  Rees Haldern, DE @ Haldern Pop
Wed. Aug. 17 –  Essen, DE @ Ruhrtriennale
Sun. Aug. 21 – Winterthur, CH @ Winterthurer Musikfestwochen
Thu. Jul. 21 – Boston, MA @ Paradise Rock Club
Sat. Jul. 23 – Asbury Park, NJ @ Asbury Lanes
Sun. Jul. 24 – New York, NY @ Central Park SummerStage
Thu. Sep. 1 – Sun. Sep. 4 – Dorset, UK @ End of the Road Festival
Sat. Sep. 3 – Manchester, UK @ Manchester Psych Fest
Tue. Sep. 6 – Baltimore, MD @ Ram’s Head Live
Wed. Sep. 7 – Richmond, VA @ The National
Fri. Sep. 9 – Asheville, NC @ The Orange Peel
Sat. Sep. 10 – Athens, GA @ Georgia Theatre
Mon. Sep. 12 – Birmingham, AL @ Saturn
Wed. Sep. 14 – Houston, TX @ White Oak Music Hall
Fri. Sep. 16 – Austin, TX @ Mohawk
Tue. Sep. 20 – Tucson, AZ @ Hotel Congress Plaza
Thu. Sep. 22 – Pomona, CA @ The Glass House
Fri. Sep. 23 – San Diego, CA @ Music Box
Sat. Sep. 24 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Wiltern Theatre
Tue. Sep. 27 – San Francisco, CA @ The Warfield Theatre
Wed. Sep. 28 – Sacramento, CA @ Harlow’s
Thu. Sep. 29 – Reno, NV @ Cargo Concert Hall
Mon. Oct. 3 – Boulder, CO @ Fox Theatre
Tue. Oct. 4 – Denver, CO @ Ogden Theatre
Fri. Oct. 7 – Lawrence, KS @ The Granada
Sat. Oct. 8 – Omaha, NE @ Slowdown
Sun. Oct. 9 – Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue
Wed. Oct. 12 – Chicago, IL @ Thalia Hall
Fri. Oct. 14 – Columbus, OH @ The Athenaeum Theatre
Sat. Oct. 15 – Louisville, KY @ Headliners Music Hall
Sun. Dec. 4 – Tokyo, JP @ O-East
Mon. Dec. 5 – Osaka, JP @ Club Quattro
Tue. Dec 6 – Nagoya, JP @ The Bottom Line