Song of the Week: Big Thief – “Not”

Beautifully, passionately raw.

In May, folk rockers Big Thief released their third full-length, U.F.O.F. It’s an excellent, lush and atmospheric affair, an instant lock for year-end lists. But now, only three months later, they’ve announced a new, companion record, Two Hands, for later this year. If the first single, “Not,” is anything to go on, the band is at the peak of their powers, surpassing every achievement they’ve reached to date.

Two Hands has been described by the band as the “earth twin” of U.F.O.F. and you can hear that in the bare-bones arrangement of “Not.” Played live with nearly no overdubs, the trembling guitar and steady rhythm slowly spirals upward, more intense with every pass. Over this, Adrianne Lenker sings out a litany, her voice ripping with pure emotion. As she says her last lines, her vocals give way to a quaking guitar solo. This isn’t a song you just listen to. It’s a song you feel and carry with you long after it ends.

Two Hands is out on Oct. 11 via 4AD.