Even if Mew have never topped their classic, less proggy 2003 album Frengers, they've never allowed themselves to release something that isn't high quality. Visuals is their first album since original guitarist Bo Madsen left the band, and Bo is missed, but the band's sound remains unchanged. If the "narrative" surrounding an album matters to you, Visuals may seem less significant than 2017's more propped-up releases. It would be an unlikely entry point to Mew's music (but not an ineffective one), and it's probably going to mostly end up in the hands of die-hards. If so, those die-hards should be very pleased with this one. It does what Mew do best, from delicate pop gems like lead single "Carry Me to Safety" to borderline metal crushers like the thick-riffed "Candy Pieces All Smeared Out."

Mew's great new album Visuals is out today and I named it one of the Five Notable Releases of the Week. That's an excerpt of my review above.

In conjunction with the release, the Danish band have announced a North American tour for August. It begins with two NYC shows: Bowery Ballroom on August 3 and Music Hall of Williamsburg on August 4. Tickets for Bowery and MHOW go on sale Friday, May 5 at 10 AM. All dates are listed below.

Watch the video for the latest Visuals single, "Twist Quest," here:

Mew -- 2017 North American Tour Dates
8/3 Bowery Ballroom, New York, NY
8/4 Music Hall of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY
8/5 9:30 Club, Washington, D.C.
8/7 The Foundry at The Fillmore, Philadelphia, PA
8/8 The Sinclair, Boston, MA
8/10 Mod Club, Toronto, ON
8/11 Magic Stick, Detroit, MI
8/12 Park West, Chicago, IL
8/13 Turf Club, St. Paul, MN
8/15 Bluebird Theatre, Denver, CO
8/16 The State Room, Salt Lake City, UT
8/18 Rickshaw Theatre, Vancouver, BC
8/19 Neumos, Seattle, WA
8/20 Hawthorne Theatre, Portland, OR
8/22 The Fillmore, San Francisco, CA
8/24 The Observatory North Park, San Diego, CA
8/25 The Observatory, Santa Ana, CA
8/26 El Rey Theatre, Los Angeles, CA