Mitski’s back: listen to new single ‘Working for the Knife’

Fresh off of a hiatus and breaking the internet, Mitski's back with a forlorn yet propulsive new single, 'Working for the Knife.'

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It only took one post from Mitski to break the internet. The indie queen of ‘feeling your feelings’ announced her official return – three years after ‘Be The Cowboy’ stole hearts and tears as one of the best records of 2018 – only to be greeted by a Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp blackout that nobody (nobody, nobody) could fix for six hours. But Mitski is back with new single ‘Working for the Knife’ and a UK and European 2022 tour, and it’s a characteristically yearning, knotty affair.

‘Working for the Knife’ sees Mitski team up with longtime producer Patrick Hyland for a synth-driven, forlorn yet propulsive track that lays bare Mitski’s angst in succinct, poetic fashion: “I always knew the world would move on / I just didn’t know it would go without me”. There are some neat distorted guitar riffs that sound like relief (there’s even a little whisper of the Velvet Underground in her delivery of “I’m working for the knife”) but before too long, “working for the knife” becomes “living” and then “dying” for it.

The superb accompanying music video (directed by Zia Anger) begins with Mitski in an empty auditorium and a cowboy hat (a cheeky wink at the audience) and ends with an onstage shedding of skin and a glorious silk two-piece that would make ABBA jealous. She mimes several anguished drags of a cigarette, switches between happy and sad as the spotlights give chase but she ultimately cannot escape the pull of the stage where she belongs. Mitski collapses, exhausted but fulfilled, as the stage lights flicker.

“It’s about going from being a kid with a dream to a grown-up with a job, and feeling that somewhere along the way you got left behind,” Mitski explains. “It’s being confronted with a world that doesn’t seem to recognize your humanity, and seeing no way out of it.”

Alongside the single comes the announcement of a UK and European tour in 2022, which will be Mitski’s first venture across the pond since 2018’s ‘Be The Cowboy’ tour. The dates are as follows:

April 21 – Marble Factory, Bristol

April 22 – University Stylus, Leeds

April 23 – Queen Margaret Union, Glasgow

April 25 – Vicar Street, Dublin

April 26 – O2 Ritz, Manchester

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April 28 – The Roundhouse, London

April 30 – Botanique, Brussels

May 2 – Le Grand Mix, Tourcoing France

May 3 – Le Cabaret Sauvage, Paris

May 5 – Paradiso, Amsterdam

May 6 – Mascotte, Zurich

May 7 – Les Docks, Lausanne

May 9 – Metropol, Berlin

May 10 – Vega, Copenhagen

May 11 – Nalen, Stockholm

May 12 – Rockefeller Music Hall, Oslo

May 14 – Fabrik, Hamburg

May 15 – Stollwerck, Cologne

May 17 – WUK, Vienna

May 18 – Rock Café, Prague

May 19 – Strom, Munich

Tickets are on sale Friday October 8 via Mitski.com

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