New Audio: Hurray for the Riff Raff Release Their Most Danceable, Most Politically Charged Album to Date

Featuring The Bronx, NY-born, New Orleans, LA-based founding member, creative mastermind and frontperson Alynda Segarra and her bandmates Yosi Perlstein, David Jamison, and Caitlin Gray, Hurray for the Riff Raff first came to prominence after they had been featured in an article in The Times based around the HBO TV series Treme  with their single “Daniela” being listed in the paper’s playlist of essential songs by contemporary artists from New Orleans — and for a sound that drew from folk, country, bluegrass and Americana paired with lyrics that approached traditional Americana themes in an unconventional way. After releasing a series of EPs and two full-length albums — one was self released through the band’s label, the other released through a small, indie label, the band’s third full-length effort, Small Town Heroes was released through ATO Records, marking that album as their major label debut. And unsurprisingly, the band’s national and international profile grew exponentially.

The New Orleans-based band’s highly anticipated follow-up to Small Town Heroes, The Navigator was produced by Paul Butler, known for his work with Michael Kiwanuka, St. Paul and The Broken Bones and Devendra Banhart. Slated for a March 10, 2017 release through ATO Records, The Navigator is reportedly both a thematic and sonic departure for the band — thematically, the album tells a deeply interwoven, cinematic story about a wandering soul named Navita, who finds herself at the crossroads of personal identity and ancestral weight, traveling across a perpetually burning city in search of her true self, while addressing many of the urgent, sociopolitical issues of our increasingly uncertain and dangerous times. But perhaps more important, while all of Hurray for the Riff Raff’s material drew from Segarra’s experience, the new album holds a much deeper, personal weight drawing from the many uneasy questions, answers and compromises that come about as a minority in the world — with the most important being “what does it mean to be prideful of your heritage in a world and society that frequently asks you to not be too proud?”

Sonically, as you’ll hear from The Navigator‘s percussive first single “Rican Beach,” the album finds the band delving deeper into Latin rhythms and styles — in particular  salsa, boogaloo and bomba, giving the single one of the tightest and most dance floor-friendly grooves they’ve ever written. But at the core of the song are lyrics that capture a frightening sense of uncertainty, subtly asking “well, who will protect me or my neighbors, who will speak for us if the authorities begin to round us up?” while simultaneously being a call to resist, to “live your life as a form of protest,” as the great Saul Williams once said.

As Segarra explains of both the single and of the album’s material “This is dedicated to the water protectors of Standing Rock – thank you for your bravery and giving us hope. Also, to the people of Peñuelas, Puerto Rico, who are demanding an end to the AES dumping of coal ash which leads to water contamination – we are with you.

All over the world, the are heroes, who despite suffering generations of oppression, are protecting the land the future of our humanity. Rican Beach is a fictional place, but it was written with my ancestors in mind. It’s time to call on yours and to always remember: this land was made for you and me.”

The band will be on en extensive tour through 2017 with Ron Gallo and it includes an April 20, 2017 stop at Bowery Ballroom. Check out the tour dates below.

Tour dates:
January 18 – London UK – Sebright Arms
January 19 – Newcastle UK – Cluny 2
January 20 – Glasgow UK – Celtic Connections at Drygate
January 21- Bristol UK – The Lantern
January 24 – Amsterdam ML – Paradiso, Upstairs
March 20 – Leeds – Brudenell
March 21 – Manchester UK – Deaf Institute
March 22 – London UK – The Dome
March 23 – Winchester UK – The Railway Inn
March 25 – Brighton UK – Sticky Mikes
March 28 – Brussels BE – Rotonde
March 29 – Hamburg DE – Hakken
March 30 – Berlin DE – Gruener Salon
March 31 – Munich DE  – Milla
April 2 – Munster DE – American Series – Pumpenhaus
April 3 – Rotterdam NL – Rotown
April 4 – Utrecht NL – EKKO
April 5 – Groningen NL -Vera
April 15 – Middlebury, VT -Middlebury College
April 16 – Northampton, MA – Academy of Music
April 18 – Cambridge, MA – Sinclair
April 19 – Cambridge, MA – Sinclair
April 20 – New York, NY – Bowery Ballroom
April 21 – Philadelphia, PA – World Café (downstairs)
April 23 – Washington, DC – 9:30 Club
April 24 – Cincinnati, OH – Woodward Theater
April 25 – Cleveland, OH – Beachland Ballroom
April 27 – Detroit, MI – Magic Bag
April 28 – Chicago, IL – Thalia Hall
April 29 – Madison, WI – High Noon Saloon
April 30 – Minneapolis, MN – Fine Line Music Café
May 2 – St. Louis, MO – Old Rock House
May 3 – Nashville, TN – Mercy Lounge
May 4 – Birmingham, AL – The Saturn
May 5 – New Orleans, LA – Civic Theatre
*All US dates w/Ron Gallo