John Grant’s third album, the invitingly titled Grey Tickles, Black Pressure goes on sale on 2 October. Recorded in Dallas with producer John Congleton (St Vincent, Franz Ferdinand, Swans), Grey Tickles, Black Pressure looks set to cement Grant's reputation as the most disarmingly honest, caustic, profound and funny diarist of the human condition in the 21st century.

“I do think the album’s great, and I’m really proud of it,” Grant says. “I wanted to get moodier and angrier on this record, but I probably had a lot more fun making it.” He cites “amazing” session keyboardist Bobby Sparks, “who really funked things up,” as part of that fun; likewise a month of Dallas sunshine “after a brutal dark winter in Iceland. And there was a lot of laughter.”

"Grey tickles is the literal translation from Icelandic for ‘mid-life crisis’, while ‘black pressure’ is the direct translation from Turkish for ‘nightmare’,” Grant explains, an unusually gifted linguist (he’s fluent in German, Russian and now tackling Icelandic). 

 “Disappointing” – featuring vocal guest Tracey Thorn – is an exuberant tribute to new love, against which Grant’s favourite Saturday Night Live comediennes, Russian artists and “ballet dancers with or without tights” pale in comparison. The album’s other two guests are vocalist Amanda Palmer and former Banshees drummer Budgie. 

The album, on Bella Union, should be available in your local record shop and all the usual online music stores and you can read a full review of it in the October issue of HFC, on sale on 3 September.