Julian Casablancas and the Voidz were formed 2013 as a side project of The Strokes lead vocalist, Julian Casablancas. Joining the Strokes singer are guitarists Jeramy "Beardo" Gritter and Amir Yaghmai, bassist Jacob "Jake" Bercovici, drummer Alex Carapetis and keyboardist Jeff Kite. Both Kite and Carapetis were previously part of Casablancas' 'Sick Six' live band, which also featured Danielle Haim.
This 11-minute epic originated with an idea that Alex Carapetis had. Casablancas recalled to NME: "When Alex first brought me that sample of Mozart and the bass part, I partly much levitated off the couch. Like, I could listen to that bit alone for half an hour or more."
"Then there was a jam that Jeremy did, and a number of different magical moments that ended up getting combined. It was the perfect storm of three magical demos that were basically the same song."
"After that it was an endless cycle of ideas and interchanging parts. It was a juggling act that kinda stretched throughout the course of the whole recording of the album. We'd visit the song, work on bits, then leave it for a week or two. It took a long time to get it in the form on the album. We really tried to get away from the standard way of recording things We did one last take, and that's the one you hear on the record."
Casablancas explained the album's concept to NME. "Tyranny is about many things, mainly how we're all failing to relate to each other or solve our collective problems," he said. "How we've retreated behind our white picket fences. How a sullen anti-politics mood the world over is ratcheting our democracy into more of a shallow puppet show than it's ever been."