Blog: We went to an Andrew W.K. party in that there London…

We partied with Andrew W.K.! A mysterious invitation lured us out on a Wednesday night. It’s been a long nine years since the party gods shone down on us and […]

We partied with Andrew W.K.! A mysterious invitation lured us out on a Wednesday night. It’s been a long nine years since the party gods shone down on us and presented with a New Andrew W.K. record, so we had to go. After all, when it’s time to party…

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As we arrive, we are treated to selections from the new album. It sounds great. A look at the tracklisting proves a thematic return to the partying that kickstarted his career (‘Party Mindset’, ‘The Party Never Dies’). Or is it?

The man himself, walks into the room. He’s (obviously) dressed in white from head to toe, towering above everyone else. It feels weird to be so close to him – like standing next to a superhero. He sits down with Radio One’s Daniel P. Carter for an interview.

It is at this point that we get a masterclass in what it means to be a true rock and roll icon. Over the course of the interview, AWK literally toes the party line. He talks about the process of recording, what he did between recording albums, about the development of the cover by the legendary Boris Vallejo. It is fun and interesting, and he always comes across as genuine, but something is… off. We learn a lot, but nothing of real substance. Andrew WK is, and always has been, a mirage.

The most interesting facets of Andrew W.K. are the cracks where the light flickers through. He alludes to some tension between himself and “The Party Gods”, that kept him from releasing something until now, but he never goes into any real detail. He hints at some kind of personal development, or breakthrough – a profound shift that permeates every track on the album. The inclusion of four spoken word tracks – added at the very, very last minute exemplify this best.

The change seems to be authenticity. We’re still talking about partying, but ‘party’ has a new definition. It’s about remaining true to oneself, being open, being honest. Not necessarily pushing oneself to drunken oblivion. This change, seemingly brought on by an extensive speaking tour in the run up to the last US election is intense.

AWK is still all about partying – but on renewed, deeper terms.

We walk away inspired, pumped, a little drunk, full of questions and brimming with the potential of positive partying.

‘You’re Not Alone’ is coming in March. It’s inspirational. It’s monumental. It’s everything you’d want in an Andrew W.K. album. Get Ready, it’s been worth the wait.

Daniel Shields

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