Icons of British hard rock, THUNDER, have announced a brand new album, ‘Dopamine’, out on 29th April 2022 on BMG, as well as unveiling the first single lifted from it, ‘The Western Sky’, the new video is available to watch:
‘Dopamine’ is Thunder’s first-ever double album, and consists of 16 tracks – something that is resonant with the album’s themes.
Guitarist, songwriter and Thunder co-founder Luke Morley says: “’We didn’t set out to make a double album but as the writing and recording process went on we wandered into some interesting areas and then it became a case of ‘can we afford to leave any of this off?’ In the end, we did reduce it from 20 tunes to 16 but it wasn’t an easy choice.”
Satirical and urgent but never downcast, ‘Dopamine’ was inspired by the world’s mass retreat to social media during the pandemic lockdowns, endlessly hunting for the next hit of happy hormones.
“I read a fascinating article by an American psychologist,” says Luke, “who said that social media forces us to become dopamine addicts. We’re validated and liked on social media, which releases the dopamine – and so we get addicted to it. We take more and more selfies in the hope of more and more validation, and the album cover reflects this. People are surrounded by amazing things that they’re missing because they’re so self-obsessed. Of course, you’ll have to get your hands on the physical album to see all of the amazing things I’m referring to.”
The new single and first taste of the album, ‘The Western Sky’, shows that despite the rallying against instant gratification, sound-wise Thunder are as immediate as ever. The razor-sharp, riff-driven track celebrates the band’s annual trans-American charity motorbike trip.
The new album comes at the perfect time for Thunder, whose line-up for the last quarter-century and more has been Luke and Danny Bowes (singer), plus Ben Matthews (guitar and keyboards), Chris Childs (bass) and Harry James (drums).
They’ve been riding a wave of success since their 2015 comeback album Wonder Days, releasing the acclaimed All The Right Noises last year, with Classic Rock speculating that it could be the band’s best album yet. The record went Top 3 in the UK Albums Chart; a quite incredible feat for a British hard rock band into their 4th decade.
And make no mistake – the last 30 years have been a rollercoaster ride. Thunder had a start in life like a few other bands, delivering a killer debut LP with 1990’s Backstreet Symphony and scoring a US record deal with the help of a keen fan, Axl Rose of Guns N’Roses. Songs like ‘Dirty Love’ and ‘Low Life In High Places’ – according to the late radio legend Tommy Vance, “the greatest ever single released by a rock band” – have gone on to enter the British rock canon.
Despite these early triumphs, rewarded with gold awards and one of the most enduring fanbases on the planet, changes in musical fashions and two breakups made Thunder’s progress a rocky road indeed.
All that changed with the current sequence of albums that kicked off seven years ago with Wonder Days. Too vital to be simply labelled veterans, too varied in style to be just another classic rock band.
Thunder are at the very peak of their considerable form, still offering fans doses of ‘Dopamine’ after all these years.
The album will be available in CD and double LP vinyl, with exclusive lenticular cover versions available only from the Thunder online store.
Thunder will also embark upon a UK arena tour in May 2022, including a date at London’s The SSE Arena Wembley
CD1 / LP1
- The Western Sky
- One Day We’ll Be Free Again
- Even If It Takes a Lifetime
- The Dead City
- Last Orders
- All the Way
CD2 / LP2
- Dancing in the Sunshine
- Big Pink Supermoon
- Across the Nation
- Just a Grifter
- I Don’t Believe the World
- Is Anybody Out There?
- No Smoke Without Fire
Double CD Digipack (BMGCAT570DCD)
Deluxe, colour double LP (BMGCAT570DLP)
THUNDER ON TOUR IN MAY 2022
Saturday 21st May Glasgow SEC Armadillo
Sunday 22nd May Leeds First Direct Arena
Thursday 26th May Cardiff Motorpoint Arena
Friday 27th May Birmingham Resorts World Arena
Saturday 28th May London The SSC Arena Wembley