Toby Driver Unveils 'They Are the Shield' (album stream)
Toby Driver follows 2017's ballads experiment, Madonnawhore, with a deeper dive into the form on They Are the Shield.
Toby Driver (maudlin of the Well, Kayo Dot) returns on 21 September with They Are the Shield via Blood Music. The album is a deeply meditative and thoughtful trip that will appeal to fans of progressive rock, avant-garde classical, and the kind of singer-songwriter records that view the form as high art.
With solo albums that reach back more than a decade now, Driver has proven himself a tirelessly inventive recording artist.
Speaking about this latest release, he said, "I never really expected this album. I had put together my previous album of ballads (2017's Madonnawhore) as an experiment that had been encouraged by friends and peers, even as far as to say that it wasn't even my idea to do such an album, to begin with. I was pleasantly surprised that it went well, and ultimately led to They Are the Shield, the second album of songs in this style which again arose out of support from my community. It's funny to me that having done larger scale, loud bands for so many years, I'm not sure if I can remember many times being encouraged by my peers to continue making music like that! Ha. But this whole ballads journey has been a totally different thing and seems to have a life of its own. Where Madonnawhore was minimal and small-scale, this new suite of songs on They Are the Shield has a bigger scope that I'm very excited to explore in a live context on the European tour with some of my most favorite collaborators."
Driver has a string of North American dates this autumn and then will take to the European/Middle East byways in November on tour with Del Judas.
"My lineup on this tour will be the supergroup of Timba Harris on violin (Secret Chiefs 3, Estradasphere, Duo Probosci), Charlie Schmid (Del Judas, Vaura, Tombs) on drums, and Nick Hudson (Academy of Sun) on keys," Driver says. "Some venues have yet to be announced, but we wanted to get this info out to you now. We'll also be adding a few dates to these in the coming weeks!"