Dev Hynes, Blood Orange, Lightspeed Champion—doesn’t matter which moniker you know him as. What’s important is that the new Blood Orange album is almost finished!
A Man of Many Names
He began as a member of dance-punk band Test Icicles. The band only lasted two years but their breakup in 2006 prompted him to move to New York. He kicked off his solo career under the name Lightspeed Champion, releasing “Falling Off the Lavender Bridge” in 2008 and “Life Is Sweet! Nice to Meet You” in 2010. Lightspeed Champion’s touring band frequently changed over the course of his two-year touring period with big acts like Florence Welsh of Florence and the Machine, Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys, and Faris Badwan of The Horrors appearing in shows.
Because of extensive touring, Hynes suffered severe throat damage and underwent surgery. This halted his career for two and a half years; he performed occasionally before releasing his final album as Lightspeed Champion. With his Blood Orange moniker, he shifted to a more R&B and electronica sound and released his first Blood Orange album, “Coastal Grooves”, in 2011. Two more followed; “Cupid Deluxe” in 2013 and “Freetown Sound” just last year. Hynes also scored “Palo Alto,” a drama film based on James Franco’s short story collection and directed by Gia Coppola.
Back in October, Blood Orange spoke to Vulture about his upcoming untitled album. He announced the album’s progress at 78% during the interview and even discussed its theme. Growing up in Essex County just outside of London wasn’t easy for Hynes, the son of a Guyanese mother and Sierra Leonean father. “It’s one of the only places in England where the BNP, which is the British National Party, a.k.a. the racist party — ‘Keep Britain White’ was one of their campaigns — were constantly elected in power,” he said. The upcoming album goes down a darker path as he rehashes a childhood of bullying, among other issues.
Hynes uploaded a grainy video of traffic with what sounds like a track from album four playing in the background. He captioned it with “4(?)” and received positive reception from the general public of Instagram.
This serves as a follow up to a track he posted on his SoundCloud last September titled “Boweryldn edit 6 15 September.” Although he didn’t confirm whether or not it will be included in the album, it’s safe to assume that the track serves as a draft.
We’re crossing our fingers for an early 2018 release and with the progress update Hynes has given, the possibility looks pretty strong. We can’t wait!
Featured image from Gigslutz