For what has seemed like years, The All-American Rejects have repeatedly promised fans that new music was on the way, but sadly, never came through. On Friday (July 7), the Oklahoma-founded band changed things when they released not one, but two new songs from their upcoming new album. To accompany the release of the two new songs (“Sweat” and “Close Your Eyes”), the band released an 11-minute music video that should be considered a short film with its time length, story line, and camera shots.
The first three and a half minutes of the clip is for “Sweat” and finds frontman Tyson Ritter dressed up as a streetwalker named “Betsy” as she tries to find some clients in the dead of night. When she finally gets a client, things take a turn for the worse when the cops barge in and catch her in a room with the client. Betsy, alongside her fellow streetwalkers, is arrested, but after a random dance number, she manages to get loose from the cops and run away.
The rest of the clip is dedicated to the group’s second single, “Close Your Eyes.” The video opens with Ritter, now going by Robert instead of Betsy, in a fluorescent-lit bathroom removing his Betsy persona. The viewer watches as Robert starts to go back to his normal self, donning a suit and tie and getting into a sports car to head home. Once he gets there, it appear like he has the perfect life, but sadly, it’s all an illusion. Watch the “Sweat” short film above.
In conjunction with the double-song premiere, Ritter spoke with Billboard about the band’s new music, their desire to take an unofficial hiatus, and of course how the two news songs came to be.
“When I was in L.A. with my feet at my little red piano, I established this relationship with a guy down the street named Benny Cassette. For ‘Close Your Eyes,’ he had a handful of tracks — he is a great producer — and he called me up. I was like, ‘This is great. This is makes me feel uncomfortable, you just proposing something like this, so send ’em my way. I’ve never tried anything like this.’ The closest I had ever gotten to co-writing before was with [Weezer’s] Rivers [Cuomo] for the Raditude record,” reveals Ritter to the publication.
He continues: “Benny’s track had this groove where I felt like I was pulling myself back into the ’90s in a fun way. Something felt really nostalgic about ‘Close Your Eyes’ for me, so I went with it. Even lyrically, I’m proud of finding some sort of depth with that song that I don’t think I’ve grabbed on with previous Rejects tracks.” Read the full interview over at Billboard.
While the band has yet to formally announce a specific release date or title for their upcoming fifth studio album, the group has revealed that the record will reportedly see a release tine frame of this fall.
In support of the new set of songs, the All-American Rejects are set to hit the road alongside Dashboard Confessional this summer. The joint summer excursion will kick off on July 13 at the Pacific Amphiheatre in Costa Mesa, California and conclude a month later on Aug. 15 at the Ravinia Festival in Highland Park, Illinois. The complete list of tour dates can be found here.
This upcoming album will be the group’s first set of new tunes since 2012’s Kids in the Street. Back in 2015, the group contributed a new song for the Drew Barrymore/Toni Collette-starring film, Miss You Already titled “There’s a Place.”