Bottle Rocket: Kurt Vile

The new album features driving guitars and cutting lyrics

Kurt Vile: “I love the desert.”
Kurt Vile: “I love the desert.”

Kurt Vile says the desert has a mystical vibe.

The Philadelphia-based rock stalwart returns to the Rialto Theatre on Tuesday, March 5, touring in support of his newest album, Bottle It In.

The 39-year-old is ready to return to the heart of the Sonoran desert, bringing his quartet, known as Kurt Vile and the Violators, with him.

"I love the desert. I love the wide open, you know, no blinders on your psyche really. You can see for miles literally and metaphorically," Vile said. "I like the dry heat. I like the mystical vibe out there. I'm stoked to be over there."

Vile and his musical cohorts will hit Tucson as part of a multinational tour that includes stops in states across the country, before hopping across the Pacific to play a host of venues in Australia and New Zealand.

He believes the band will be in fine form by the time they reach Tucson, delivering a night of music that fans and newcomers alike can enjoy.

"I really think at this point the band, by the time we get out to you will be nice and oiled up," Vile said. "I think it just feels really good to play live these days and deliver a solid show. I think just playing live in general is an organic experience. It's a spiritual experience, really. It's a total release."

Vile is proud of the work the band put in on their latest album, which includes toe-tapping singles, like 'Loading Zones' and 'Bassackwards.'

Vile believes the band's newest body of work illustrates their maturity as a collective and their ability to deliver a variety of genres in one 13-track album.

"You know looking back on it, it's a pretty heady record in general," Vile said. "It doesn't compromise. It's lots of lyrics, and it just kind of keeps going when it wants to."

Vile said that Bottle It In is not an attempt to win over new fans with shallow songs that are easy to consume but lack depth and substance.

Instead, Vile and his bandmates sought to produce a record that featured a level of depth, while still featuring the driving guitars and cutting lyrics that have made Vile a household name in the industry.

"I'm not trying to appease any non-believers or reel somebody in with a pop song," Vile said. "It's kind of just a deep record. It's an important record for me. I'm really happy with it."

Vile said the decision to make "Loading Zones," along with "Bassackwards" and "Bottle It In," the album's three singles stemmed from his manager's take on the work as a whole.

The former War On Drugs frontman said he was happy with the three choices, given the pop stylings of the former, and the heavy-hitting nature of the first two choices.

"My manager really liked both of those songs, 'Loading Zones' and 'Bassackwards' and the label agreed, and they wanted to roll with it. I just let them honestly," he said. "But I'm not too worried, I just wanted to keep putting out singles and see how they do."

It's safe to say their choices worked, as Bottle It In reached as high as the 79th spot on the US charts, while peaking in the Top 100 of charts in Belgium, Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Vile hopes to pack the 1,200-seat downtown venue in early March, bringing a high-energy act that's sure to entertain the masses.

He believes those who arrive early will be in for a two-act special, with Canadian rock group The Sadies providing a fitting opening act for the evening.

"It's an epic rock show. Everybody's going to get off for sure," Vile said. "The Sadies are an unbelievable band opening, and it's just going to be a night of pure music. Pure release."

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