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Tim Minchin Addresses Midlife Crises in New Single, ‘Airport Piano’

The track is the latest single taken from Apart Together, the forthcoming debut studio album from veteran performer Tim Minchin.

Damian Bennett*

Tim Minchin has continued his run of singles in the lead-up to his forthcoming album, sharing the upbeat “Airport Piano” this morning.

Having first announced his debut studio album back in March, Minchin has been sharing a run of tracks from Apart Together in anticipation of its release in November.

Though “Leaving LA” was somewhat buried due to the prevalence of COVID-19 lockdowns, follow-up singles “I’ll Take Lonely Tonight” and “Apart Together” have been warmly received by fans as they experience the more emotional side of Minchin’s songwriting.

“Airport Piano” manages to bring the exuberance up again somewhat, with the slick track becoming, as Minchin explains, “almost definitely the funkiest tribute to midlife crises and the emptiness of acquisition ever recorded in the antipodes.”

Speaking to Rolling Stone ahead of the track’s release, Minchin explained that the track originally began life as a title alone, before the hook of “women in SUV Porsches always look miserable” managed to bring together two seperate themes which manage to capture the essence of his new album.

“In one sense, it’s about grabbing moments like when a flight is delayed; use that time,” he explains. “This whole album’s really about this. It is an appeal to understanding that life is fleeting and that time moves fast and you’ve just got to use your time. The whole record resonates with that, I realised. It’s a bit of a ‘heading towards middle age’ album.

“This idea, ‘I wrote this song on an airport piano, […] I had a spare hour‘, and it’s this idea that you’ve got to create and observe and be present basically. On the flipside, it’s the thing we actually spend our time doing, which is trying to buy more shit.”

The track also comes accompanied by a music video, which premieres at 5:30pm AEST on YouTube. Created during lockdown, Minchin explains that the idea behind the clip unintentionally managed to play into the underlying theme of the track itself.

“This idea for this music video that came from my brother in law, we ended up having to make in quarantine after we found out mum was sick, by sending my dad to Bunnings and getting him to do drop-offs, is actually a person desperately trying to fill the canvas of their life,” Minchin explains.

“He’s writing, putting all his anxieties onto a blank canvas, and it’s like writing ‘I was here’ on a wall. The human condition or the artist’s desire to go ‘I was here. I said my piece, and I had something to say.’ And this idea of someone desperately writing their experience onto a blank canvas which happens to be an instrument, it’s a real visceral sense of having to scrape ‘I was here’ into a toilet wall. It’s a similar vibe.”

Tim Minchin’s “Airport Piano” is out now, with its official video premiering on YouTube at 5:30pm AEST. His album, Apart Together, will be released on November 20th, with pre-orders available now.