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The Chicks drop 1st album post-name change, ‘Gaslighter’

The Chicks' official 'Sleep At Night' music video

After 14 years of keeping fans waiting, the band formerly known as Dixie Chicks has released its eighth studio album, Gaslighter.

As of July 17, The Chicks are officially back, with 12 brand new songs, including the smash-hit single, Julianna Calm Down, Sleep at Night and last month’s critically acclaimed protest anthem March March.

Sleep at Night is the latest of the four singles and was released on Friday, alongside a music video which stars the much-beloved triad of country musicians: frontwoman Natalie MainesMartie Maguire and Emily Stayer.

Gaslighter was co-produced by the Chicks and Jack Antonoff (Bleachers) and marks the first collection of original music from the Chicks since 2006’s Taking the Long WayIt was released through Columbia Records.

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Initially set for a worldwide release in May, the highly anticipated project was pushed back to the summer as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic — which has essentially put the entertainment industry on hold.

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Hours ahead of Gaslighter’s release, the Chicks paid a virtual visit to The Late Show and spoke with host Stephen Colbert about the new record before giving their first-ever televised performance under their new moniker.

Despite being recorded at their own respective homes, the three musicians pulled off a stripped-down playthrough of March March, backed by a plethora of instruments.

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Though the song was only recently released last month, Strayer told Colbert, 56, that the lyrics were “basically written a couple of years ago” before noting how pertinent it was to “right now,” because of the ongoing Black Lives Matter protests against anti-racism and police brutality.

Last month, the 13-time Grammy Award winners officially changed their band name to the Chicks in wake of the social movement. Albeit brief, the Wide Open Spaces hit-makers issued a statement which read: “We want to meet this moment.”

 

Though it was not acknowledged by the Chicks specifically, multiple news outlets (including Variety), reported that the decision followed discussions around the appropriateness and historical associations with the word “Dixie.”

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Dixie was used as a name for the Southern/Confederate states in the U.S. during the American Civil War — it came just before the abolishment of slavery in the U.S. in the late 19th century.

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In wake of the album’s release, Gaslighter and the Chicks quickly became trending topics on Twitter, after thousands of fans took to the social media platform expressing their excitement about the release.

Here’s what some of them had to say:

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“I’m listening to @thechicks’ new #Gaslighter album for the third time today and wow, it’s good,” tweeted another. “The lyrics are incredible and I have missed their voices so much. ”

“Can’t wait ’til I know all the words (don’t think it will be long), so I can sing my heart out in the car,” the user concluded.

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Gaslighter is now available through all major streaming platforms.

As revealed by Maines during The Late Show interview, the band had plans to tour Gaslighter this summer, however, those dates were never announced as a result of the global health crisis. On the other hand, their website previously suggested that they might hit the road in the near future. The message read: “Long time gone … but coming soon,” under the tour section.

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Any additional updates or information will be provided through the official Chicks website.

Full Gaslighter tracklist:

1. Gaslighter
2. Sleep at Night
3. Texas Man
4. Everybody Loves You
5. For Her
6. March March
7. My Best Friend’s Weddings
8. Tights On My Boat
9. Julianna Calm Down
10. Young Man
11. Hope It’s Something Good
12. Set Me Free

adam.wallis@globalnews.ca

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