On Friday, Whitehall released a new single, “Mexico.” It’s the band’s first release since their sophomore album Swordfish Catcher, which dropped in April.
“Mexico” presents an energy that comes across more lighthearted than what we heard in the Swordfish Catcher songs — the intensity of sound is still there, but with less angst, at least in the beginning. It starts with a plucky bass line. McKiernan’s voice rises and falls, zig zagging through notes, and the guitar does the same. The lyrical focal point is a laid-back sentiment: “Chillin on a beach down in Mexico / playing it cool and taking it slow.”
Toward the end of the song, the energy picks up, and we’re reminded of the band’s ability to build up noise. The motifs skew darker: McKiernan mentions “black clouds” and repeats “scared straight / acting out.”
Stream “Mexico” by Whitehall below and catch them at Royal American Saturday, February 12 with Pierce Alexander.