New Jersey punks Titus Andronicus—whose 2010 opus about being surrounded by racist assholes in the suburbs, The Monitor, is still pretty relevant—are returning with a new album. On Wednesday night, Titus frontman Patrick Stickles announced that A Productive Cough, their first release since 2015's massive double album The Most Lamentable Tragedy, is out March 2 via Merge—much to the dismay of folk and Twitter legend David Crosby.
Crosby, who’s become known for brutally honest takes, interactions with other artists you might not expect, and the occasional blistering own via quote-tweet, let his fans know what he thinks of Titus Andronicus. On Wednesday, an editor for Minneapolis alt weekly City Pages dropped a link for Titus Andronicus’ anthem “A More Perfect Union” and said he was “very curious” what Crosby thought of the band. Well:
Either this is the savviest viral marketing campaign of all time, or wild coincidence, but Titus Andronicus announced their new album just hours after Crosby casually ethered them. Titus frontman Patrick Stickles, who seemed to take the diss in stride, released the first single from A Productive Cough, “Number One (In New York),” just hours after Crosby’s initial Titus tweets.
The new album has a tighter tracklist than The Most Lamentable Tragedy—just seven songs—but based on lead single “Number One (In New York),” there’s still plenty of room for these songs to expand and stretch out. It’s a sprawling eight-minute track that begins as a piano ballad and crawls to some mild “loud thrashing around” by the end. Maybe Crosby gave it a listen—he offered a slight retraction in the early morning hours.
Personally, I think it’s music, and good music at that. But I take it that sort of thing’s subjective; let us know where you stand in the comments.