14 Aug 2019

Michael Kiwanuka announces new album and shares new single 'You Ain't The Problem'

From RNZ Music, 10:00 am on 14 August 2019

British soul singer Michael Kiwanuka has this morning released new single ‘You Ain’t The Problem’ and announced he’ll release his third album Kiwanuka in October.

Michael Kiwanuka, whose song 'Cold Little Heart' is the theme song to HBO show Big Little Lies, has announced he'll release his third album Kiwanuka on October 25, more than three years after his last record Love & Hate.

A young British-African, Michael gave the album its name in order to celebrate the Ugandan name his old teachers in London’s Muswell Hill would struggle to pronounce.

Album artwork for Michael Kiwanuka's  third studio album 'Kiwanuka'

Album artwork for Michael Kiwanuka's third studio album 'Kiwanuka' Photo: Supplied

“I remember when I first signed a record deal, people would ask me, ‘So what are you going to be called?’” Michael says, “And I never thought of that; calling myself ‘Johnny Thunders’ or whatever, like singers from the past.

“But I have thought, would I sell more records if my name had an easier ring to it? So [on this album] it’s kind of a defiant thing … I’m not going to have an alter ego ... I can just be Michael Kiwanuka.”

The new album is produced Danger Mouse and Inflo, the same team that worked on the Mercury Prize-nominated Love & Hate, and moves even further away from the folk-infused vintage soul of his 2012 debut Home Again (also Mercury Prize-nominated).

Michael explains: "The last album came from an introspective place and felt like therapy, I guess. This one is more about feeling comfortable in who I am and asking what I want to say.”

Kiwanuka deals with difficult subjects including black identity, violence and self-doubt, with a collection of songs that recall greats such as Gil Scot-Heron, Fela Kuti, Bobby Womack and Kendrick Lamar.

Album Track listing:
  • You Ain’t The Problem
  • Rolling
  • I’ve Been Dazed
  • Piano Joint (This Kind Of Love) Intro
  • Piano Joint (This Kind Of Love) Main
  • Another Human Being
  • Hero
  • Hard To Say Goodbye
  • Final Days
  • Interlude (Loving The People)
  • Solid Ground
  • Light
  • The Sampler: Love & Hate by Michael Kiwanuka
  • Michael Kiwanuka: Artist of the week
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