With a little less than a peep for about two years, Seattle rock act Fleet Foxes is returning in 2011 with a new album and the first tour since 2009.

"Helplessness Blues" will drop via Sub Pop/Bella Union on May 3, around the time that the band is hitting the road.

You can stream the title track here, or below...

It kind of delivers in movements, in the same folk-gospel, vocals-up-front that made songs like "White Winter Hymnal" so successful. The acoustic holds down any rhythm section that previously seemed required.

Phil Ek will be helming the set; he produced the band's self-titled debut as well. He helped out on Band of Horses' latest efforts, too -- notable considering that group used to be on FF's former label Sub Pop and, frankly, are sometimes their musical doppelgangers. I'd be curious to see if Ek will be helping those pop melodies stick out like "Infinite Arms" did.

Tour dates beneath the player.


Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues
by subpop

Here are Fleet Foxes tour dates, with presale going up tomorrow (Feb. 1):

04/30/11 Sat - Vancouver BC @ The Vogue Theatre *
05/01/11 Sun - Portland OR @ Crystal Ballroom*
05/03/11 Tue - Seattle WA @ Moore Theatre*
05/05/11 Thu - Oakland CA @ Fox Theater**
05/06/11 Fri - San Diego CA @ Spreckels Theatre*
05/07/11 Sat - Hollywood CA @ Hollywood Palladium*
05/08/11 Sun - Tucson AZ @ Rialto Theatre*
05/10/11 Tue - Austin TX @ Stubbs Waller Creek Amphitheater*
05/11/11 Wed - Dallas TX @ Palladium Ballroom *
05/13/11 Fri - Nashville TN @ Ryman Auditorium*
05/14/11 Sat - Atlanta GA @ The Tabernacle*
05/15/11 Sun - Washington DC @ DAR Constitution Hall*
05/17/11 Tue - Boston MA @ Orpheum Theatre*
05/18/11 Wed - New York NY @ The United Palace Theatre*
05/21/11 Sat- Upper Darby PA @ Tower Theatre***
* On sale to general public Feb 4
** On sale to general public Feb 6
*** On sale date TBA
 
UK and European Tour
05/25/11 Wed – Berlin, Germany @ Astra*
05/26/11 Thu – Munich, Germany @ Dachau Summer of Music*
05/28/11 Sat – Barcelona, Spain @ Primavera Sound**
05/30/11 Mon – Paris, France @ Bataclan*
05/31/11 Tue – London, England @ Hammersmith Apollo*
*On sale to general public Feb 4 at 9am local time
**Currently on sale