Shangri-La, A Physical Object

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The physical edition of our new album, Shangri-La, is an elaborate print object. We take you on a tour, in what is probably the world’s first ever unboxing video filmed in the woods.

“Before all else, I learned all these playthings were not mere idle trifles invented by manufacturers and dealers for the purposes of gain. They were, on the contrary, a little or, rather, a big world, authoritative and beautiful, many sided, containing a multiplicity of things all of which had the one and only aim of serving love, refining the senses, giving life to the dead world around us, endowing it in a magical way with new instruments of love, from powder and scent to the dancing show, from ring to cigarette case, from waist buckle to handbag. This bag was no bag, this purse no purse, flowers no flowers, the fan no fan. All were the plastic material of love, of magic and delight. Each was a messenger, a smuggler, a weapon, a battle cry.”

— Herman Hesse, from Steppenwolf

With YACHT, everything we do is personal. When you hold, listen, or view something with our name on it, you can know with complete certainty that we made it ourselves, or that we made it while working closely with human beings we respect and trust. Because “YACHT” is the name we use for everything we do — music, text, objects, video, and design — we don’t consider any part of our output to be peripheral. The design of the YACHT website is as important to the experience of YACHT as our live shows are. So it should go without saying that we go to great pains to make sure that the physical copies of our albums are things worth owning.

This is why the physical copies of Shangri-La have not been available until right now. We wanted to make them special, the kind of thing you can take pride in physically holding in this age of undifferentiated digital ownership.

Of course, we’re proud members of the digital age; we simply wouldn’t be here without the Internet. Reaching out across a sea of ones and zeros is a huge part of what YACHT is about — but the important thing for us is less the medium as it is the manner in which it facilitates connection. We touch and are touched via the conduit of the digital, but the touch is what matters.

Touch matters. Physical objects matter. As Herman Hesse wrote, they give “life to the dead world around us, endowing it in a magical way with new instruments of love.” The physical Shangri-La is definitely an instrument of love. It pulls together a wide array of our favorite influences into one encyclopedic document that belongs on a bookshelf as much as it belongs in a record store bin. The LP and CD are both nested in four removable nesting dust jackets, each of which is a high-quality oversized print document that could stand on its own.

As far as we know, no one has ever packaged an LP or CD quite like this.

The outer dust jackets are like inverted liner notes; they display lyrics and colophon on their inner flaps, and large-scale images on their outer pages. The images we chose range from 18th century utopian architectural studies to science-fictional texts that speak to the larger aspirations of this band.

Shangri-La was laid out and designed by the inimitable Scott Ponik, of Portland, Oregon, and includes graphic elements by Aaron Draplin, photography by Alin Dragulin, and a painting by seminal science-fiction illustrator Jim Burns.

Shangri-La Deluxe LP Details:

120g Vinyl made in the USA
24pt Double Gatefold LP (Paper: Uncoated White Board)
Stamp Embossed Jacket Printing
4x 60lb Nesting Dust Jackets (Paper: Alfa 70# C1S)
Printed in the USA
Also Available as a Deluxe CD

You can buy the Shangri-La deluxe-edition double LP or gatefold CD package on the DFA webstore. Buy CD Buy LP