The band managed one headlining show in 2020—at Minneapolis' venerable 7th St Entry in the midst of a January snowstorm—before COVID-19 shut down the planet. In lieu of a live presence, they redoubled their focus on recording for a major release in 2021, led by their first new single in nearly three years, "Gouda Bear."
Social distancing has always been a built-in function of Flip Rushmore; four of the five members live in Minneapolis (Dan Klauer, Nick Spielman, Adam Szczepaniak, and Mike Green) while frontman Alex Smith is a Minnesota expat residing in Nashville, Tennessee. They pieced together their new project across 900 miles of highways while working around individual health concerns.
Lyrically, they targeted white-hot issues facing both Minneapolis and the entire United States, among them: false promises of the stock market ("Gouda Bear"), whiteness in the wake of George Floyd's death ("Platypuseidon"), America's ugly reputation ("The Loathsome Crowded West") and the death penalty ("9").