It’s been a while since we heard from Phosphorescent, singer-songwriter Matthew Houck’s dreamy, exultant exploration of folk pop by way of soft rock. His most recent studio album was 2013’s Muchacho, followed by a 2015 live album and a cover of “This Land Is Your Land” for last year’s anti-Trump compilation Our First 100 Days. But it’s been a busy few years for Houck, who toured extensively behind the well-received Muchacho, relocated from New York City to Nashville, and welcomed his first child. C’est la vie, as one might say, and that’s also the title of today’s newly announced Phosphorescent album. C’est La Vie was recorded at Houck’s own Spirit Sounds Studio in Nashville and arrives October 5 from Dead Oceans.
As a first taste, Houck has released “New Birth in New England,” a chirpy, upbeat tune made for doing what the lyrics describe, which is not much: listening to music, thinking about ordering another beer. It’s about as pop as a song with prominent steel guitar can be, though if you listen more closely you’ll notice the extended interlude and some lines that seem to describe the experience of becoming a first-time father.
Phosphorescent will tour the U.K. and Europe this October, before returning stateside in November. Listen to “New Birth in New England” and see release details for C’est La Vie and upcoming tour dates below.