Lambchop Shares “Police Dog Blues,” Announces New Album

Kurt Wagner has announced a new Lambchop record called The Bible (Merge Records), out September 30, 2022. Pre-order the album on CD or 2-LP with etching (available on both limited-edition yellow & black marble Peak Vinyl or standard black) in the Merge store and participating independent record stores. In addition, Grimey’s in Nashville and Electric Fetus in Minneapolis will have an exclusive vinyl pressing on “smog” (gray & white marble).

The Bible’s first single, the six-minute bible-thumping funk exploration “Police Dog Blues,” arrives today with a music video generated on the Unreal 3D graphics engine and directed by Isaac Gale. 

Isaac Gale on the video:

White privilege and apathy in the face of disastrous reality. I don’t think it’s stretching it to compare the police in Minneapolis—where myself and the producers of the record, Ryan Olson and Andrew Broder, all live—to a human-made catastrophic disaster. 

We took the police dog from the song title literally and imagined a city, post-cop-apocalypse, overrun by German Shepherds just kinda doing their thing. The process of directing this video for me was similar to watching a friend playing video games and chiming in with ideas that might help get them where they need to go. We needed to produce this in virtual reality as opposed to live-action to achieve the most grotesque imagery possible from these ideas. Using 3D models and software made it possible to visualize the cold, horrible, detached-from-reality feeling that we wanted from the empty city and suburbs. Joe Midthun used Unreal Engine and Visions of Chaos to set up events like dogs just hanging around or a tidal wave of police flowing into a suburb, and we’d hope for happy accidents from the AI. 

Kurt Wagner on the song:

During the unrest surrounding the horrific injustice in Minneapolis in 2020, I had been re-listening to a song by Blind Blake, “Police Dog Blues.” Of note, it was originally recorded in 1929, the year my father was born, and it seems John Peel played it on his show on Sept. 11, 1968. It was deceptively upbeat musically and not what I remembered at all. Then I remembered a police dog is a Shepherd.