Release Date: 9 February 2018
"Ezra's fourth solo album, Transangelic Exodus, is her most thematically cohesive work to date: a loose narrative about supernatural queer lovers on the run from the law. The misfit feelings surging through his back catalog crystallize here into detailed imagery, giving the album a lurid, cinematic sheen." - Pitchfork
"It’s surely long overdue that the transangelic community – people born knowing they’re illegally angels inside and transitioning with an operation to release their wings – should have their struggle documented in a leftfield alt-pop “queer outlaw saga” concept album. And, at long last, here it is. Chicago art-pop provocateur Ezra Furman’s eighth album (with various backing bands) tells the “half-true memoir” of Furman falling for a transangel and having to go on the run while shadowy government agencies and Nazi gangs hunt the lovers down." - NME
"The rebrand hints at the richness of imagination in Transangelic Exodus, in which Furman and his celestial lover go on the run from an oppressive government in an adrenaline-jolted, allegorically angry “queer outlaw saga”, a dark, fantastic road story reminiscent of David Lynch’s Wild at Heart or the classic comic Preacher. Furman’s songwriting is invigorated by a headlong rush of narrative, exploring episodic shifts of tone along the way." - The Guardian
Checking Furman’s successive album covers will show her personal journey, coming out as queer and gender-fluid, which the jagged, agitated ‘Maraschino-Red Dress $8.99 at Goodwill’ meets head on, namely “the painful experience of being a closeted gender-non-conforming person. Having ‘trans’ in the album title has a lot to do with being queer, like [album finale] ‘I Lost My Innocence’ [“…to a boy named Vincent”). That early experience marks the narrator for life. From a young age, because of issues surrounding gender and sexuality, I felt fated to have an outsider perspective. It radicalises you.”
Transangelic Exodus addresses another kind of coming out, as Furman addresses her Jewish faith on record much more openly than before, from the shivery ballad ‘God Lifts Up the Lowly’ (which includes a verse in Hebrew) to the exquisite ‘Psalm 151’ and the line “I believe in God but I don’t believe we’re getting out of this one” in ‘Come Here Get Away From Me’, a heady blend of rock’n’roll rumble and ghostly clarinet.
Part of Furman’s motivation is the, “fear of fascist takeover,” expressed in the video to ‘Driving Down To L.A.’ (filmed in Virginia, and uncannily storyboarded before the state’s infamous Charlottesville “Unite The Right” rally), as Ezra and her angel are pursued by modern-day Nazis. “At school, we learned all about the Holocaust, and were invited to imagine what would happen if the Nazis invaded again. As white supremacy has become more explicitly institutionalised in the US, my childhood nightmares have started to show up in songs.”
Crossing between love, gender, sexuality and religion, and singing in solidarity with the innocent, persecuted, oppressed and threatened, Ezra Furman has soundtracked the current fear and loathing across America like no other, while pushing ahead with her own agenda, always on the move.