Tank and the Bangas have announced their latest album, Red Balloon, and shared the LP’s first single, “No ID”, along with a retro music video set at a roller rink. Red Balloon, a conceptual companion piece to 2019’s Green Balloon, is due out May 13th via Verve Forecast.
As Tarriona “Tank” Ball explained during a live Q&A on Friday morning, the concept for Red Balloon dates back to Green Balloon‘s creation. “Green Balloon told a story. Green Balloon lived in a moment of the past, it was very reflective. This album, Red Balloon, was about living right now. …This was more explorative, free music time, jamming with the band as it is that day.”
Originally conceptualized as a real-time companion to Green Balloon, Red Balloon was eventually pushed back to allow the material to take shape over time. Still, Green Balloon dropped various hints about thematic duality of the project, from references in the 2019 LP’s intro track, “Colors”, to the subtle wink of its closing song, “Colors Change”.
A pandemic-imposed break from touring gave the band time to fortify its creative union and bring Red Balloon to fruition. The new work highlight’s the group’s unique observations and songwriting, reflecting on the ills of America while also celebrating the beauty of Black life. Predominantly produced by Tank and the Bangas, the 16-track album was recorded at Bangaville Studios in New Orleans and Revival Studios in Los Angeles. Red Balloon also features contributions from a long list of guests including Alex Isley, Masego, Questlove, Lalah Hathaway, Big Freedia, Jacob Collier, Trombone Shorty, Jamison Ross, The Hamiltones, Georgia Anne Muldrow, and Wayne Brady.
“No ID” gives listeners their first taste of Red Balloon. The excited yet inquisitive disco-funk jam arrives along with a ’70s-stylized music video. The video takes viewers to a roller rink for some old-school fun, Tank and the Bangas providing the groove from the center of the floor as a parade of talented skaters rolls past them. As is always the case with Tank and company, the celebration only grows bigger and more joyous as it goes on.
Tank and the Bangas – “No ID” (Official Video)
Tanks and the Bangas – “No ID”