Song Premiere: Blind Pilot, 'Umpqua Rushing' : All Songs Considered The first song from And Then Like Lions (out August 12) is a hazy, quiet beauty that builds slowly but persistently.
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Song Premiere: Blind Pilot, 'Umpqua Rushing'

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Song Premiere: Blind Pilot, 'Umpqua Rushing'

Song Premiere: Blind Pilot, 'Umpqua Rushing'

Song Premiere: Blind Pilot, 'Umpqua Rushing'

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/479498392/479498477" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Blind Pilot's new album, And Then Like Lions, comes out August 12. Eric Ryan Anderson/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Eric Ryan Anderson/Courtesy of the artist

Blind Pilot's new album, And Then Like Lions, comes out August 12.

Eric Ryan Anderson/Courtesy of the artist

Blind Pilot, And Then Like Lions Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Courtesy of the artist

It's been nearly five years since the charming Portland folk-pop band Blind Pilot released its second and most recent album, We Are The Tide, and that record's roiling title track has only recently begun popping up in beer commercials. Given that the band used to tour up and down the West Coast via bicycle, it should come as no surprise that Blind Pilot is accustomed to taking its time.

On August 12, Blind Pilot will finally release And Then Like Lions, the band's third album and first new release for a big label. Its grower of an opening track, "Umpqua Rushing," points to a softer, dreamier direction for Blind Pilot. It's a hazy, quiet beauty that builds slowly but persistently — appropriate for a band that's long balanced rising-star status with the subtlety of a lifer with little to prove.

Blind Pilot singer-songwriter Israel Nebeker writes about "Umpqua Rushing" and And Then Like Lions via email:

The past isn't finished with us yet. Love can be like that, too. I think of this album as a conversation about different kinds of loss and the courage we find when we face loss honestly, cracked open and unsure of what we will become, which is the only real way to face it. In this song, I write about the Umpqua Forest in Oregon and the lost coast of Northern California. It amazes me how places reveal themselves as significant to us by the stories we live in them. They echo memories back to us when we visit or when we listen from afar. I like that, and it reminds me how the past isn't finished with us.

And Then Like Lions comes out August 12 on ATO.