Originally making his mark with the teenage punk outfit Test Icicles, Devonte Hynes has been on an extraordinary journey since, releasing some highly-praised melodic indie music under the Lightspeed Champion moniker, before heading to the States to forge a new career as Blood Orange.
His last album, Freetown Sound, was released to critical acclaim in 2016, a personal document of life as a black man in America. His new album and the fourth as Blood Orange, Negro Swan, will be released on 24th August.
He has collaborated with Solange Knowles, Skepta, FKA twigs, Carly Rae Jepsen, A$AP Rocky, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Blondie, and many others, and was recently one of four artists invited to the Kennedy Center to perform alongside Philip Glass. In addition to his production work, he scored the film Palo Alto, directed by Gia Coppola.
“My newest album is an exploration into my own and many types of black depression, an honest look at the corners of black existence, and the ongoing anxieties of queer/people of colour. A reach back into childhood and modern traumas, and the things we do to get through it all. The underlying thread through each piece on the album is the idea of HOPE, and the lights we can try to turn on within ourselves with a hopefully positive outcome of helping others out of their darkness.”
So far only one date in the UK has been announced, at Shepherd’s Bush Empire, on 29th October.