Amelia Meath and Nick Sanborn are Durham-based Sylvan Esso. They earned their first Grammy nomination for Best Dance/Electronic Album for their second album, “What Now.” Shervin Lainez
Amelia Meath and Nick Sanborn are Durham-based Sylvan Esso. They earned their first Grammy nomination for Best Dance/Electronic Album for their second album, “What Now.” Shervin Lainez

Entertainment

Grammy-nominated Sylvan Esso debuts new single on ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live’

By David Menconi

dmenconi@newsobserver.com

January 10, 2018 06:05 PM

Sylvan Esso didn’t just play “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” late Thursday night – the group also premiered a new single.

The song, called “PARADE(w/m)E,” might be the most overtly political song that the Durham-based, Grammy-nomiated duo has made to date. And while it sounds fun and bouncy, that’s deceptive, because singer Amelia Meath describes “PARADE(w/m)E” as “basically a children’s song about a post-apocalyptic search for food.”

Following Thursday night’s “Kimmel” show on ABC, Sylvan Esso has a busy upcoming tour schedule that will take them all over the world. But the itinerary does not, alas, include the Grammy Awards – which they had planned to attend as nominees for Best Dance/Electronic Album. It’s the group’s first Grammy nomination for their second album, “What Now.”

“It’s the Grammys, a dream,” Meath said in November when their nomination was announced. “You grow up watching them, and it’s about the only thing that makes most of your relatives think you’re doing OK as a musician. I’m trying to manifest stuff happening by preparing for it, so I’ve got my cousin who designs earrings making me some special one-offs. And I think I found the dress.”

But all that went for naught because of prior live-show commitments. When the Grammy ceremonies happen in New York on Jan. 28, Sylvan Esso will be halfway across the globe.

“We can’t go to the Grammys, which is the worst,” Meath said this week. “But it’s because we’re going to be on this beautiful spring festival in Singapore with a bunch of our friends, which is the best.”

Dates in New Zealand and Australia are also on this winter’s tour schedule before Sylvan Esso returns to the U.S. mainland in February. The group will be busy on this summer’s festival circuit, too, with high-profile appearances confirmed for three of the biggest festivals in America: Governors Ball Music Festival in New York (June 1-3); Bonnaroo in Manchester, Tenn (June 7-10); and XPoNential Music Festival in New Jersey (July 27-28).

“But more than (the festivals), I’m excited that next summer is our first tour of bigger rooms I’ve always wanted to play,” said instrumentalist Nick Sanborn. “So we’re headlining at Red Rocks and playing The Greek.”

David Menconi: 919-829-4759, @NCDavidMenconi