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What can we expect from the new album? - "songs mainly"... An Interview w/ Aubrey Haddard
One of the USA's most acclaimed rising songwriters is New York's Aubrey Haddard. Her 2018 debut album 'Blue Part' demonstrated a beautifully delicate and thoughtful approach to her craft. The record was awash with natural tones, blissfully intimate vocal performances and cinematic soundscapes with just a flurry of Aubrey's own audible swagger. After the subsequent years of growth and development she is back with her sophomore album 'Awake and Talking' which was released this month. We caught up with Aubrey herself to see what the album has in store.
Can you talk us through what inspired the lyrics of the single ‘Just A Wall’?
"The lyrics describe the narrative of one of my favorite films, Orphée. Visually there is so much to take in from the film - mirrors, motorcycles, costumes, illusions - it seemed like the perfect muse".
What kind of moments is this track written for?
"Mania, euphoria, dire existentialism, horse riding, spelunking, crying alone in a lush meadow".
'Just A Wall' opens with a subtle synth pulse setting a tranquil scene for Aubrey to showcase the crisp power of her vocal range. Her voice is persistently captivating, particularly when she layers her different vocal lines with an ethereal effect that is reminiscent of LUMP. Then, in the later stages the track leaps into a soaring cacophony of euphoria. The guitar lines remain fairly dreamy, adding a rich textural bed. Meanwhile the drums inject the song with a hectic rolling energy whilst Aubrey's vocals rise high creating a Wolf Alice esc crescendo. It is big, bold and a whole lot more expressive than her debut. You can't help but be transported to a higher place wile listening to the huge finale.
How does the new album ‘Awake and Talking’ compare to your debut record?
"Songs, mostly. They all have lyrics and melodies, some are fast and some are medium. My band says they’re great".
How do you feel you have developed as an artist and personally since the release of ‘Blue Part’?
"I’m still the same person who made ‘Blue Part,’ I just found God in ‘Hounds of Love’ and am now a crusader".
How has the writing process for the new album differed to previously?
"The new record was completely written and recorded in familiar places. Previously, I would rent a studio, reference some voice memos and crank it out. With this upcoming record, I had the chance to demo out plenty of tracks, record any ideas, and then track the whole thing in our home studio, on our own time".
You have said that your current songwriting is guided by the great European songwriters of the 90s and 00s. Which songwriters have had the most influence on you and what have you learned from them that you are implementing in your new music?
"I learned how to write a story from outside of my own perspective from Kate Bush. I embraced the melody writing style of the Cocteau Twins. Inspired by Stereolab, I filled every corner of the mix and arrangement with sound".
What lyrical themes feature most heavily on the new album?
"Lyrically I think you can hear a lot of disillusionment expressed as my relationship with the world has been changing".
You have mentioned that self examination features through the new album. Can it be a vulnerable process examining yourself through music or do you find it cathartic?
"It's definitely a combination of the two, but it's particularly cathartic".
What other new artists have you been listening to recently?
"Cate Le Bon, Liz Cooper, Caroline Polachek, Aldous Harding and Sunflower Bean".
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