The band self-produced the album, which will be released on November 4, 2022 by Loyauté and Glassnote Records.
Phoenix's first album after 2017's Ti Amo is "Alpha Zulu." The album was preceded by the songs "Identical," "Alpha Zulu," "Tonight," and "Winter Solstice."
Phoenix began recording the album at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs studio within the Louvre Palace in Paris during the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020.
In an empty museum, the band "thought it would be a tremendous adventure to make something out of nothing," according to Laurent Brancowitz.
Christian Mazzalai stated that despite his initial fears about writing music when surrounded by "too much beauty," the band "couldn't stop generating music" and wrote "nearly all" of Alpha Zulu inside the first 10 days.
Philippe Zdar of Cassius, who died in 2019, influenced the album. Three of Phoenix's albums were produced by Zdar.
The song "Identical" initially appeared on the soundtrack for Sofia Coppola's film On the Rocks in 2020.
Following the release of the song, vocalist Thomas Mars claimed that it "goes in a different musical direction from the LP," which seems "all over the place" and like the "same kind of odd Frankenstein of an album" as the band's debut United.
The 2020 version of "Identical" has a duration of 3:13, whereas the Alpha Zulu version has a duration of 5:02.
The title was inspired by Mars hearing "alpha zulu" over an airline radio during a turbulence.
The terms are derived from the ICAO alphabet, often known as the NATO phonetic alphabet; Alpha would be used phonetically for the letter A, and Zulu for the letter Z.
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