Wednesday 6 December 2023

A (sort of) love letter to live music and community

December - goodness. Many of you will know that I work in a bookstore, and can probably imagine just how busy and stressful that is right now. Carrying stacks of books (and everything else) from section to section, fielding queries, recommending books. It is at once the best and worst time to work in a bookstore. Helping people to choose gifts can be kind of magical, but retail definitely presents you with the worst of people - sadly not even bookshops are immune to that.

As ever, music is a big salvation, and beyond my headphones and the blog inbox, it has been a delight to find time to escape to a bunch of gigs over the past couple of months. A quick scan of my gig list tells me I’ve been to fourteen shows so far this year, in various forms… including an album launch on a nature reserve, in-stores at Rough Trade and Banquet Records, and even a night at the British Library. Varied and always brilliant. For the majority of those I was on the guestlist/given tickets by the artists and their teams. Getting invited along to shows was always one of the best blog perks, and I feel really lucky to still get asked, despite blogging a little less frequently.

Aren’t gigs great?

I’ve been going through some stuff lately… I’ve talked a little about this online, but the long and short is that I’ve come to realise that I might be autistic. I’m in the very early stages of looking into getting an assessment. The more I read about autism, about it in general, about other people’s experiences, the more I feel that I am coming to understand myself better, how my brain works, and how I form (or more accurately, struggle to form) connections with others. I've  come to realise that it probably isn't "normal" that I've always just felt a bit odd, a bit of an outsider, quiet, and that there might be a reason that I sometimes struggle to communicate, to make connections that others seem to do so easily.

Music, though, has always been one of the few ways that I could connect with others. With artists, their teams, with fans who share my love of a particular artist. The blog you’re on now is in a way the centre of a community of sorts that I have formed around myself, rooted in a love of music and of the people making music.

I love live music but gigs aren’t always the easiest experience - they can be loud and overwhelming. I look around at groups of people from my spot in the corner, where I'm probably alone reading a book in between sets. But gigs can be, and often are, pure magic. Transcendent. A couple of shows I’ve been to recently were exactly that - Johnny Flynn and Rob Macfarlane at Rough Trade East and Bear’s Den at Union Chapel.

Johnny and Rob’s show was one of a couple of album launch in-stores for The Moon Also Rises and it was stunning. Far from the scripted, rehearsed and polished world of the Lost In the Cedar Wood show I went to at The Globe last year (and wrote about here) this was endearingly chaotic. A bunch of friends having fun and reliving the experiences of recording the album together through conversation and song. Even for a relatively small and short in-store like this, Johnny roped in three vocalists who sang on the record to perform with him, which was breathtaking.

Rob came on stage to chat with Johnny for a short while about the process of making the record (at Cosmo Sheldrake’s studio, with a bunch of their pals) and he mentioned something which really resonated with me - about Johnny creating community around his music. A record like this and a performance like that doesn’t come around by accident… Johnny has forged a close community of creatives around him over the years, and it comes across so beautifully in the recordings and the performance. In fact, Johnny talked about this being his favourite way to make music on a recent radio interview

I wanted to write about this, and about how great the show and album were, but work (and life) got in the way, and I haven’t found the time.  Then I went to see Bear’s Den at Union Chapel and I felt the exact same sensation that was so tangible while watching Johnny, and I wanted to write about that show - and the two posts have merged themselves, to become this stream of thoughts you're stumbling across now.

The magic of the Den playing four nights in such a special venue is no accident, nor are the gorgeously talented musicians joining them on stage (brass AND strings… aaaaagh.) They’ve helped to create this through Kev's label Communion and through their music, through years of touring, of making connections. They’ve surrounded themselves with so many brilliant artists and to see them seemingly still so humbled to work alongside them all is genuinely beautiful as an audience member.

I'm rambling... but I guess this is all to say that I sometimes struggle to find exactly where I fit in, to find my 'tribe' as it were. I often feel that I’m on the outside looking in, admiring these musical communities and not feeling like I could ever be part of them. Through the blog, and through gigs like these two, I feel like I’m able to dip my toes in, to venture into these communities, even if just for a night, and that is magic enough for me. (Though I would also very much like to be a fly on the wall for a recording session at Cosmo's place...)

Now: onto the next gig!

Tuesday 14 November 2023

LISTEN: Emma Gatrill - 'Out Of The Dark'

We might be nearing the end of the year and album of the year round-ups can't be far off (yikes) but there are still some exciting new releases on the horizon. One of the things I'm particularly excited for is Come Swim, the new record from Brighton based multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and all-round musical good egg Emma Gatrill, which arrives on November 24th via Willkommen Records

I've shared a couple of the singles here already as I think they're brill (I particularly love Adonis Blue - especially as I heard it around the time I saw one!) and I'm not stopping yet, here's Emma's latest gorgeous single Out Of The Dark. Harp, strings, synths, harmonies - there's a little bit of everything, and I'm all over it. 

Talking about the new track, Emma explains that it is "a song about searching for the light in the darkness, trying to discover the best in ourselves and those around us. We have to be the first to change to bring about change. It pays homage to the fabulous Kristin McClement whose song 'Pursue the Blues' was inspirational to this tune. For this album I asked lots of different drummers to record me beats to write to. This song was crafted to a beat written by Jamie Whitby-Coles but then took its own direction. The drum machine ended up replacing the original drums as it added the grit and drive that the song needed."

For those of you lucky enough to have a ticket, Emma opens up for Bear's Den at the second of their four-night run at Union Chapel on Monday 27th November. Enjoy!

Follow Emma Gatrill - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Sunday 5 November 2023

A season of Stornoway

As I sit and start to write this, it’s 24 hours since I was watching Stornoway play for the fifth time this year, at Nottingham’s Rescue Rooms. Weather permitting, I’m tempted to go and see them again this week. (Spoiler: I went, of course I did.) I’ve not been to many gigs since covid, for various reasons, and at the moment it feels that there aren’t many bands that could keep getting me out of the house. Stornoway, however, are so very special to me and I have had the best time following them around over the past few months. It’s been a genuinely really inspiring ride, and I feel motivated to write a little self-indulgent ramble, so here goes.

This has been a generally shitty year for me, and like it so often does, music helps. In recent years, I’ve found a deeper love for nature and wildlife, especially birds. For a while, it felt that I’d replaced loud, busy, crowded gigs for open green spaces, swapped music for birdsong. It doesn’t have to be either or, though. Like a couple of other artists I love (hello Cosmo Sheldrake and Johnny Flynn) Stornoway bring together these joint loves in a truly beautiful way. A love of nature, a passion for environmentalism and brilliant music - an irresistible combination. Getting to see Stornoway perform a few times recently has been a real highlight of a miserable year. One of the gigs was even at a wetland centre: the absolute dream.

Now let’s rewind. I can’t claim to have been around from the start (their gorgeous debut album came out in 2010) - in fact, I stumbled across the band a little by accident, meeting bassist Oli at a Sofar Sounds show in Oxford in 2014. I’d only been living in Oxford for a couple of months, and while I’d been to a few gigs, joining the Sofar crew was the best introduction to the local scene that I could’ve had. I had been an admirer of the Sofar videos on Youtube for a while at this point, and was really excited to get the opportunity to volunteer as a photographer for the Oxford shows.

I had a camera and plenty of enthusiasm, but not much experience of taking photos at gigs, and I was certainly learning ‘on the job’, but I loved my time at Sofar - I met so many cool people (volunteers, gig-goers and artists alike) and got to attend gigs and take photos in some interesting places, many of which I’d likely never have visited otherwise. The first of these shows was at the Worcester College Common Room. Classic Oxford. Oli set up the Oxford branch of Sofar, so we met at the show, and I remember finding him on Facebook afterwards, and noticing that he was in a band, a band which seemed to have a lot of likes… I quickly realised that they were basically Oxford music royalty and started to listen.

The first time that I got the opportunity to see Stornoway perform was on Record Store Day at Truck Store on Oxford’s famous Cowley Road, in the release week of their album Bonxie. An origami bird (I still have it in the CD case) guaranteed me entry as I’d bought the album beforehand, but I was late as I’d headed into town after an early morning RSD shopping. It was so so busy (perhaps I’d underestimated how much Oxford loved them) that I literally had to squeeze in to the doorway and couldn’t see a thing as there was a wall between me and the stage. I might not have seen much, but it sounded glorious.

A few days later, I took a train to Reading with a flatmate to see them play a ‘proper’ gig at Sub89. There was birdsong playing in the venue between sets, which at the time I would probably have thought was a bit quirky, but would now appreciate as a superb artistic choice. More birdsong, always. I remember being completely transfixed by the ‘unplucked’ Josephine and watching my recording of it over and over afterwards.

They played a few acoustic shows later in the year, promoting their new Bonxie Unplucked EP, on which sits their now classic (thanks to the Co-op) The Only Way Is Up cover. Oli got me a photo pass for the Oxford show, and I felt like the coolest person wandering around the church with my camera. I remember avoiding an essay or something similarly important to go to the gig - but it was definitely worth it. They played a beautiful show (and Charlie Cunningham supported!) and I was happy with my photos, and I was certainly starting to really fall for the band.

Stornoway performing at on the Bonxie Unplucked tour

At the start of 2016, I was doing a placement module on the English Literature side of my degree, and the opportunity to work with Oli and Tom (a member of the extended Storno live band) came up. Probably a fairly tenuous link to English Literature when most of my fellow students were working at publishing houses and newspapers, but my lecturer seemed fine with it, and suddenly I was entering the world of live music promotion. As part of the placement I put on my first ever gig, and people actually came to it! The placement went well and I worked with them as community manager for a while (both at university and after graduating), avoiding some of the responsbilities of my degree while working the door for multiple gigs a week across Oxford and often going to other shows in between. 

Later that year, just before the public announcement, Oli emailed me one morning to let me know that Stornoway would soon “be no more”. Compared to some, I hadn’t been around as a fan for long, but I loved the band and was sad for my friends, as I knew how much they loved playing together. It wasn’t meant to be a hiatus or a break, they were all moving on to other projects, to other lines of work, to other countries. The finality of it made it tough news, but a farewell tour was on the horizon, which promised to be a celebration of the band.

The farewell tour happened in March 2017 and was a complete triumph - it seemed that they really were bowing out at the top of their game, with adoring fans left begging for more. Better than fading into the background, surely. I saw them play in London (and got the tea towel) and a couple of days later in Oxford at the final date of the tour. I got to hang around for most of the day (at Oxford’s New Theatre, no less) as we were promoting the show: I watched the soundcheck, had a wander backstage, watched the show, watched as fans said their hellos and goodbyes at the merch stand, and went to the after party with the best of the best of Oxford’s music scene. I never really made tons of friends at university, but the local scene was really welcoming, and Stornoway were always an integral part of it. At the end of the party, I shared a taxi with Oli & Rob’s parents as my halls of residence were close to their house. I remember sitting in the kitchen until the light switched off automatically and just having a cry that something so special was over. Stor-no-more.

I was still working with Oli and Tom at the time, and I’ve kept in touch with them beyond, and knew that the band still occasionally played together at private events, but I had no inkling that a reunion might be on the cards. Last year brought a couple of festival appearances that I couldn’t get to, and it felt a little bittersweet to know that they were playing but that I couldn’t see them. The shows were a sort of extension of the farewell tour, promoting the live album that they’d released from the Oxford show. (Aside: if you have this CD, my photo of the soundcheck is behind the CD in the case!) 

Little did we know that they’d actually been recording a new album at this point, in sheds around the country (where the best albums are made, of course) and that they’d soon be back. Properly. Who could’ve dared to hope for such a scenario?!

The band getting back together and announcing a new album was the best news to kick off Spring this year. I missed out on tickets to their comeback London gig (big sad) but soon the gig and festival announcements started to come thick and fast. I was reunited, physically and musically, with Stornoway at Cambridge Folk Festival in July. It was magnificent. I wrote about it here. The band were so so great, the crowd loved it, and I got to meet one of my favourite authors before their set. Truly the stuff of dreams.

Reuniting with Stornoway at Cambridge Folk Festival

It’s been a bit of a whirlwind few weeks since then around the album release - the band invited me along to see an intimate album launch celebration at WWT’s London Wetland Centre in Barnes in September. It was definitely one of the coolest places I’ve seen a gig, as the band performed with the backdrop of the wetland behind them. Getting to birdwatch while listening to one of my favourite bands was a fairly magical experience. Parakeets were determined to feature on every song, and I saw a jay fly past at one point during the set. Lapwings out on the water too, I think!

Stornoway performing at WWT London Wetland Centre

They brought out Yijia and Fyfe Dangerfield to sing the songs they’d collaborated with them on, and were interviewed about the record afterwards by another collaborator (and all round musical/environmental hero) Sam Lee. I stuck around after the main event, and got to go out into the reeds and watch Brian and Fyfe performing Anwen a couple more times for the video below. Easier said than done, as we were directly under the shared flightpath of airplanes and birds, and while the video looks gloriously sunny, the sky was the deepest grey behind us, and the heavens opened just after this video. After helping to load the van back up (transferrable skills from working in a bookstore and carrying big ol’ piles of books all day every day) I caught a lift with the band back to Hammersmith, and felt pretty sure this wasn’t the last I’d be seeing them…

Of course I couldn’t resist going to see them at Rough Trade East a couple of days later for an instore performance - a very different setting (let’s just say that I’ll take a nature reserve over the rubbish lined streets of Brick Lane any day) but they were ever so brilliant. Before I knew it, I was going to a last minute show at Banquet Records a week or two later, on the day of the album being released. It’s a bit of a trek down to Kingston but so worth it to see them play in such an intimate setting, and to celebrate album launch day with Brian and Jon. 

A few weeks (and many many listens of the album) later I took my dad along to see them (well, he drove me) at Nottingham’s Rescue Rooms. This is where I first saw The Hoosiers back in May 2011 (my first gig in a proper music venue) and it now holds even more special memories for me. Yijia opened the show with a mesmerising set and then it was time for Storno… A full band, a mind-boggling array of instruments (including: a saw, multiple trowels, a bucket of Welsh gravel, a melodica…), a setlist travelling through each of their albums, Low Island’s Felix playing an absolute blinder on drums, unplugged tracks. It had all the ingredients to be one of my favourite ever gigs (it was) and then they went and played one of my favourite songs, dedicated to me. Fairly sure I cried.

I discovered their track Boom Went The Bittern last year through a live video on Youtube from several years ago. There’s a chance I’ve heard it live before, but it has become a bit of a soundtrack of my walks in the past year or so. I’ve been slyly nudging the band to play it since Folk Fest, and on Sunday, they conceded to my badgering - it was one of the best moments of a gig ever for me, no lie.

If I was sensible, that should probably have been it, but I adored the Nottingham gig so much that I had to try and get along to another show. On Wednesday, I took two trains there and back to Cambridge, straight after a busy shift at work, and rounded off my little season of Stornoway with another beautiful show. Complete with a little bit of crowdsurfing from Oli and one of my favourite gig photos ever.

Oli crowd-surfing during Zorbing in Cambridge

So that’s that! It’s been an absolute treat to get to see Stornoway over the past few weeks - in various venues, with different line-ups, different songs. Following them around has given me a little of that gig-going confidence back, and I squeezed in a few other shows in between theirs, with a few in my calendar that I’m hoping to get to before the year is out - looking at you Johnny Flynn, BE GOOD, Chartreuse, Bear’s Den

At each Stornoway gig I've been to by myself lately, I've connected with people in the queue or at the barrier. They've had a little of the magic of those Sofar gigs, providing the opportunity to chat to like-minded folk who are into nature and music. Stornoway fans are a lovely bunch. The band, it goes without saying, are wonderful humans too. They're touring again in February (you should go) and I'm hoping to make it to a show or two then. 

For now: I love you, Stornoway. I am so so glad that you're back, and I'm certainly not the only one. The world, my world, is better for having Stornoway in it. 

Follow Stornoway - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Wednesday 25 October 2023

WATCH: BE GOOD - 'Donuts'

Good news alert! Oxford (via Berlin, nowadays) sweethearts BE GOOD are back with an absolute banger. In the kinda, indie bedroom-pop sense of the word, of course. I've loved these guys an obscene amount since I lived in Oxford and Donuts is their first new track since last April. No pressure then... Luckily, it's a beaut. Obviously. It's late, and I'm struggling to formulate words to just tell you how much I love this band: I'll let the music speak for itself.

The good news keeps coming: if you like what you're hearing here (and why wouldn't you?!) you're in luck, as BE GOOD headline The Lexington in a few weeks, on 16th November. See you at the front? Tickets available here.

Follow BE GOOD - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Wednesday 18 October 2023

LISTEN: Chartreuse - 'Whippet'

"I'm grasping the neck of all of my friends singing I deserve the same as you do."

Chartreuse never disappoint, and I'm a little in love with this one. I should probably be heading to sleep, but I feel compelled to write as I've just listened to their new single a few times in a row and then fallen into a little Chartreuse shaped rabbit hole. Love them and love this one a lot! They recently announced their debut album Morning Ritual, which is due for release via Communion Music on 10th November - Whippet is the latest single to be taken from it. 

With Hattie on lead vocals on this one, she describes how the track was inspired by a conversation she had with a friend at the pub about life plans and 'settling down.' "She was asking me what my plans were, and I said I didn't know. A lot of our friends have serious careers, and we're in a band. I felt bitter about having to have the conversation, so the line "left like a whippet" is me wanting to leave and stop talking about it."

If you like what you hear - they're heading on tour across November: dates and tickets here. They've also just announced a few instore shows, tickets here.

Pre-order/pre-save Morning Ritual here.

Follow Chartreuse - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Sunday 15 October 2023

ALBUM NEWS: Johnny Flynn & Robert Macfarlane - 'The Moon Also Rises'

For a bunch of reasons, I've been pretty bad at blogging lately. My head is in a bit of a weird place at the moment and being back to full time at work is exhausting - it's hard to find the time around everything, to be honest. I think that I've also perhaps felt a little distant from music/the blog in general lately... I haven't been to many gigs since lockdown, and writing about artists I'd seen live when I was living in Oxford was how the blog really started to take off in the first place. 

Recently, however, I've had a whirlwind couple of weeks of gigs in London: first up, three Stornoway album release shows for their record Dig The Mountain! which came out last week, and just hit #7 in the album sales chart. Incredible! They played beautiful sets at Banquet Records and Rough Trade East and the launch event at WWT London Wetland Centre was such a special afternoon. Next, my forever favourites The Hoosiers playing one of the best shows I've seen them play at London's KOKO (enough said). And earlier this week, Christof van der Ven headlining in London for the first time in a few years and me getting to rub shoulders with blog favourites Bear's Den and The Staves. I'm eyeing up some more gigs soon... music is pretty great, huh? 

I'm feeling a teeny bit inspired by it all, so I'm making a tentative return to trying to ramble about music - and where better to start than the return of one of my absolute favourite musical pairings, Johnny Flynn and Robert Macfarlane. Separately, they're one of my favourite musicians and one of my favourite writers, and together they make art that I adore. Lost In The Cedar Wood is a favourite album and the accompanying performance was stunning, and I loved getting the chance to chat to Rob about it earlier this year at Cambridge Folk Festival, where he told me exactly what I wanted to hear, that they'd been working on more music, and it was imminent...

A few weeks ago, the pair officially announced that they'd made a new record. Hallelujah! The Moon Also Rises is releasing via the beautiful label Transgressive on 10th November, and it features the first single Uncanny Valley: 

In his announcement of the record, Rob wrote: 

It’s about darkness and light, winter & spring, burial and revelation, stories, weather and seasons, ghosts and paths and love and rivers, and other bits and bobs and pots and pans.

We sort of just kept on writing songs after finishing Lost In The Cedar Wood; some of them we found by walking tracks & rainy woods & streams together, & some by noodling in notebooks, & some in poems & stories, & almost all by laughing a lot.

Working & making with Johnny is just one of the great joys of my life. He’s a quiet, gentle, generous genius with a huge gift for making collaborative, creative connections between people. He’s also very funny. 

Charlie Andrew is on producing duties, and the album features much of Johnny's Sussex Wit band as well as the Sheldrakes, Cosmo and Merlin. You basically couldn't imagine a lovelier and more wholesome bunch of creatives to make music together, and the results are unsurprisingly gorgeous. Second single No Matter The Weight is out now. Almost frustratingly brilliant. 

Pre-order/pre-save the new record here.

Follow Johnny Flynn - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Follow Robert MacfarlaneTwitter | Instagram.

Wednesday 20 September 2023

LISTEN: The Staves - 'You Held It All'

You heard it here first: I'm well and truly back in my The Staves era. So many of my favourite artists are coming back with new songs and albums at the moment and I have fallen pretty hard for this one. The duo are back with You Held It All, their first release via Communion Records (a match made in heaven, I think?) and their first new music since the 2021 album Good Woman (my album of the year.) It is almost TOO good?! I haven't much to say, apart from that I love these sisters so much. Crossing my fingers that there's an album on the way, but for now, I'll happily listen to this one on repeat...

On the track, the band share: "You Held It All is a song about understanding, and the knots we tie ourselves in when we don't express our truth; and how much power and freedom there can be when we do."    

Follow The Staves - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Thursday 7 September 2023

LISTEN: Stornoway - 'The Navigator' (feat. Sam Lee)

Months on, it still doesn't seem quite real that Stornoway are back but they really are - they're several festivals down, have an instore tour and a regular tour on the way, and their new album Dig The Mountain! arrives on October 6th. What a time to be alive! The new music keeps arriving and I think that you could hardly wish for a more dreamy coming together of voices than Brian Briggs and Sam Lee. I'm certain that the band's new track The Navigator is something I dreamt up. I think I must like it a fair bit - a couple of weeks after release it is already in my top three most streamed songs of the year. That good! 

On the track, Brian shares: “this song was inspired by [a] sailing adventure with friends. For me there is no more powerful way to get perspective than to go in a small boat out of sight of land. There is surely no wilder place, no situation where you feel smaller or more vulnerable. We had no choice but to tune deeply into the shifting wind and waves that governed our days. Worries and problems shrank and were blown away. And a shared sense of isolation brought us together as a motley crew, whilst also making us question where we were going in our own lives. 

It was a pleasure to record Sam Lee’s rich, woody baritone on a warm, May day in a Gloucestershire woodland. He made a wonderful addition to the crew!" 

Sam adds: “The wait is over and Stornoway have returned with a bounty of utterly stunning songs. It seems their time away from playing has only made them a better band!”

Dig the Mountain! arrives 6th October - pre-order/pre-save here. Also very much worthy of note is the exciting news that the band are re-issuing their debut album Beachcomber's Windowsill on vinyl via the lovely Dinked (details here) on 8th December. You can pre-order that from a selected bunch of independent record stores (I'd recommend Resident Records in Brighton for a brilliant postal service if like me you don't have one particularly local to you!) 

Follow Stornoway - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Follow Sam Lee - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Tuesday 5 September 2023

LISTEN: Bombay Bicycle Club - 'I Want To Be Your Only Pet'

Welcome to the latest in a long line of: songs I'm obsessed with. Bombay Bicycle Club are just the absolute best, aren't they? I am living for the promo they're doing for their upcoming record. Digging up MSN conversations from the early days of the band? Too pure. A karaoke instore tour where fans got up on stage and performed as part of the band? Incredible. They're clearly having a great time promoting the album, performing and making music at the moment and I'm very much here for it! 

I Want To Be Your Only Pet is the latest in a run of superb singles from the album - with a properly classic Bombay riff that just seems to get better on each listen. The idea of this one rushing over me at a gig some time soon... yes please?! P.S - I managed to sneak an early listen and the entire album is brill, obviously.

On the new track, Jack shares: "I was just playing around with guitar sounds at soundcheck, and started playing this riff. Jamie must have heard something in it because he got out his phone and started recording. For the next few months he would constantly text me to ask "have you written a song around that riff yet?" So finally I did to stop him harassing me. To me it sounds like if Abbey Road era Beatles had a love child with Rated R era Queens of the Stone Age." 

My Big Day is due for release on 20th October - pre-order/pre-save here.

Follow Bombay Bicycle Club - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Thursday 31 August 2023

WATCH: Francis of Delirium - 'Real Love'

Hello again! Two posts in two days? Who is she?? Short answer: I'm SO obsessed with this beautiful new video from Francis of Delirium that I instantly needed to share it. I've loved the project for years, and loved this track when it came out back in July. The new video, co-written and co-directed by Jana herself along with Rares Matei, is a gorgeous representation of a young blossoming relationship. Too pure. 

Talking about the track, Jana shares: "'Real Love' at its heart is a simple song about being in love with your best friend. For years, timing got in the way. I got in my own way, and then finally, it worked out. Coming out of a two-month-long tour in the US and heading into summer back at home, it felt like my world was opening up. I wanted to write a song that reflected the feeling of leaning into vulnerability, a song that embraces telling the people you love what they mean to you and truly meaning it. Spending every night watching The Districts on tour really impacted me. There was this hopefulness I heard in their music that I really connected to. After writing our last EP ‘The Funhouse’ which was all about darkness and the feeling of being engulfed by the chaos of the world, I just couldn’t write anything super dark and heavy at the time, it just wouldn’t come out. My body and brain were just guiding me to writing lighter, more open music."

Follow Francis of Delirium - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.