Posts Tagged ‘Angel Olsen’

Two of the best contemporary singer/songwriter/guitarists, Angel Olsen and Sharon Van Etten, have teamed up for a brand new collaborative song, “Like I Used To” It was shared on Thursday via a video for the duet. John Congleton, who has worked with both artists before, produced the rousing anthem, which starts with vocals from Van Etten, before Olsen takes over and then they join forces, trading lines. To hear and see both of them singing together is quite chill-inducing. When I first heard this song a day before its public premiere.

The Track featuring Dave Hartley of The War On Drugs, Zac Rae of Death Cab For Cutie, and Griffin Goldsmith of Dawes as the backing band. It’s a gorgeous, glorious, soaring track with heart-rending harmonies and a touch of country flavour. Sharon and Angel sound as incredible together as you’d expect, 

Kimberly Stuckwisch directed the accompanying video, which was shot in Los Angeles and Joshua Tree.

Olsen and Van Etten have long been mutual admirers, but have never collaborated together.

“Even though we weren’t super close, I always felt supported by Angel and considered her a peer in this weird world of touring,” says Van Etten in a press release. “We highway high-fived many times along the way…I finally got the courage in June of 2020 to reach out to see if she would want to sing together. I got greedy and quickly sent her a track I had been working on.”

“I’ve met with Sharon here and there throughout the years and have always felt too shy to ask her what she’s been up to or working on,” adds Olsen. “The song reminded me immediately of getting back to where I started, before music was expected of me, or much was expected of me, a time that remains pure and real in my heart.”

There’s no word yet as to whether or not this is a one-off single or part of a larger project.

Earlier this month, Olsen released a new box set, “Song Of The Lark And Other Far Memories” via Jagjaguwar recordings. The set features Olsen’s albums “All Mirrors” and “Whole New Mess” along with a bonus LP titled “Far Memory” and a 40-page book. 

Last month, Van Etten released “Epic Ten” an anniversary reissue of her 2010 Epic album, via Ba Da Bing. It featured covers of the some of the album’s songs by notable artists, including Fiona Apple, Courtney Barnett and Vagabon, IDLES, and more. Van Etten’s most recent new album, “Remind Me Tomorrow”, came out in 2019 via Jagjaguwar Recordings.

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Angel Olsen and Hand Habits cover Tom Petty’s “Walls” for Cosmic Stream 2. Filmed at the Masonic Temple in Asheville, NC. Olsen’s flight is both upward and inward. On her vulnerable, The Big Mood new album, we can see her taking an introspective deep dive towards internal destinations and revelations. In the process of making this album, she found a new sound and voice, a blast of fury mixed with hard won self-acceptance.

First started listening to Angel Olsen with the “Woman”, which is I believe is a classic from 2016, which also included another classic, “All Mirrors,” was another strong release from Olsen & music. I got the vinyl and 24-bit wav files of WNM, and both are stunning. WNM will be among the favourites of 2020.
Olsen’s music gives hope to all who suffer hurt, emotional and physical, from ones we love or thought we loved.

Angel Olsen Song of the Lark and Other Far Memories

Angel Olsen has announced a new box set called “Song of the Lark and Other Far Memories”. The release—out May 7th via Jagjaguwar recordings the release includes her last two albums, All Mirrors and Whole New Mess, as well as a bonus LP with bonus tracks, alternate takes, remixes, a cover of Roxy Music’s “More Than This,” and more.

Originally conceived as a double album, All Mirrors and Whole New Mess were distinct parts of a larger whole, twin stars that each expressed something bigger and bolder than Angel Olsen had ever made. Released in 2019, All Mirrors is massive in scope and sound, tracing Olsen’s ascent into the unknown, to a place of true self-acceptance, no matter how dark, or difficult, or seemingly lonely. All Mirrors is colossal, moving, dramatic in an Old Hollywood manner. Recorded before All Mirrors but released after, Whole New Mess is the bones and beginnings of the songs that would rewrite Olsen’s story. This is Angel Olsen in her classic style: stark solo performances, echoes and open spaces, her voice both whispered and enormous. All Mirrors and Whole New Mess presented the two glorious extremes of an artist who, in these songs, became new by embracing herself entirely.

Now, with Songs of the Lark… And Other Far Memories, these twin stars become a constellation with the full extent of the songs’ iterations: all the alternate takes, b-sides, remixes and re-imaginings are here, together. Alongside, a 40-page book collection tells a similar story, not just through outtakes and unseen photos but through the smaller, evocative details: handwritten lyrics, a favourite necklace, a beaded chandelier. As if it could be more plainly stated (there’s nothing more),

The box set will also come with a 40-page book. “It feels like part of my writing has come back from the past, and another part of it was waiting to exist,” Olsen said of the box set in a statement.

Among the tracks on the Far Memory bonus LP are Johnny Jewel’s remix of “All Mirrors” and Mark Ronson’s remix of “New Love Cassette.” There’s also an alternate version of “Whole New Mess” called “It’s Every Season (Whole New Mess),” which you can hear below.

Angel adds one cover here: a loving, assertive rendition of Roxy Music’s “More Than This.” It is a definitive collection, not just of these songs but of their revelations and their writer, from their simplest origins to their mightiest realizations.

Angel Olsen Song of the Lark and Other Far Memories

Angel Olsen’s 2016 marvel, My Woman, had been a career breakthrough, but it catalyzed a period of personal tumult, too: a painful breakup, an uneasy recovery, an inadequate reckoning. at home in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge mountains, Olsen penned songs that finally grappled with these troubles, particularly love—how forever is too much to promise, how relationships can lock us into static versions of ourselves, how you can go through hell just to make someone else happy. these heartsore explorations shape “Whole New Mess”.

Getting a glimpse at an alternate take of a classic album is something we’ve seen more and more in the modern era. But with her new album Whole New Mess, a fraternal twin to 2019’s “All Mirror”, songwriter Angel Olsen didn’t have to wander too deeply into the vault. But it’s not merely a “demos collection.” Instead, Olsen reimagines the songs of “All Mirror” in compelling and strange ways, documenting the way songs change and morph over time in an adventurous creator’s hands.

“If I’d wanted to release demos, it wouldn’t sound this way,” Olsen says of her first proper solo album since 2012. “The sonics would be very different if I’d just recorded it myself. I was still in the process of going through a lot of the material emotionally. I just wanted to have an account of how I would’ve done it without someone really stirring the pot.”

Olsen’s first solo album since her 2012 debut and an emotional portrait so intimate and vulnerable you can hear her find meaning in these crises in real-time. at least nine of the eleven songs on Whole New Mess should sound familiar to anyone who has heard All Mirrors, Olsen’s grand 2019 masterpiece that earned high honours on prestigious year-end lists and glossy spreads in stylish magazines. “lark,” “summer,” “chance”—they are all here, at least in some skeletal form and with slightly different titles. but these are not the demos for all mirrors. instead, Whole New Mess is its own record with its own immovable mood, with Olsen working through her open wounds and raw nerves with just a few guitars and some microphones, isolated in a century-old church in the pacific northwest.

“Waving, Smiling” from ’Whole New Mess’ by Angel Olsen, out on Jagjaguwar August 28th, 2020

Though its track list overlaps with her last record, this new project illustrates how songs can change over time. Much in the same way that a song’s meaning can soften and reshape itself over time for its author, here the material Olsen is working with is akin to metal freshly pulled from a forge, pliable into the forms that still hot emotions could bring about.

If the lavish orchestral arrangements and cinematic scope of All Mirrors are the sound of Olsen preparing her scars for the wider world to see, Whole New Mess is the sound of her first figuring out their shape, making sense for herself of these injuries. considered alongside All Mirrors, Whole New Mess is a poignant and pointed reminder that songs are more than mere collections of words, chords, and even melodies. They are webs of moods and moments and ideas, qualities that can change from one month to the next and can say just as much as the perfect progression or an exquisite chord. in that sense, these 11 songs—solitary, frank, and unflinching examinations of what it’s like to love, lose, and survive—are entirely new. this is the sound of Angel Olsen, sorting through the kind of trouble we’ve all known, as if just for herself and whoever else needs it

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Angel Olsen has announced a new album called “Whole New Mess”, the first material she’s recorded and released without any bandmates since 2012’s Half Way Home. It’s out August 28th via Jagjaguwar Records. Watch a video for “Whole New Mess” below. The time had come, Angel Olsen realized in the fading summer of 2018, to take her new songs out of the house. Olsen’s 2016 marvel, My Woman, had been a career breakthrough, but it catalyzed a period of personal tumult, too: a painful breakup, an uneasy recovery, an inadequate reckoning. At home in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, Olsen penned songs that finally grappled with these troubles, particularly love—how forever is too much to promise, how relationships can lock us into static versions of ourselves, how you can go through hell just to make someone else happy.

Find physical editions of Angel Olsen’s Whole New Mess at Rough TradeOlsen recorded Whole New Mess in October 2018 at The Unknown, the church-turned-studio run by Phil Elverum and Nicholas Wilbur in Anacortes, Washington. The album features more intimate versions of several songs that appeared on last year’s All Mirrors. Olsen explained her approach in a brief statement:

I had gone through this breakup, but it was so much bigger than that—I’d lost friendships, too. When you get out of a relationship, you have to examine who you are or were in all the relationships. I wanted to record when I was still processing these feelings. These are the personal takes, encapsulated in a moment.

At least nine of the eleven songs on Whole New Mess should sound familiar to anyone who has heard All Mirrors, Olsen’s grand 2019 masterpiece that earned high honours on prestigious year-end lists and glossy spreads in stylish magazines. “Lark,” “Summer,” “Chance”—they are all here, at least in some skeletal form and with slightly different titles. But these are not the demos for All Mirrors. Instead, Whole New Mess is its own record with its own immovable mood, with Olsen working through her open wounds and raw nerves with just a few guitars and some microphones, isolated in a century-old church in the Pacific Northwest. If the lavish orchestral arrangements and cinematic scope of All Mirrors are the sound of Olsen preparing her scars for the wider world to see, Whole New Mess is the sound of her first figuring out their shape, making sense for herself of these injuries.

Angel Olsen “Whole New Mess”

Hand Habits, in partnership with Saddle Creek Records and Bandcamp, will be donating all of the profits raised from the EP to the Amazon Conservation Association, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, that has been protecting the Western Amazon for almost 20 years.

“Being a touring musician 8 months out of the year, you are exposed to a lot of varying degrees of climate change effects in a short period of time. From the gasoline that’s used to fuel touring vehicles, to the massive amount of plastic waste at the end of every show, to the carbon emissions released into the air by all the travel, it’s often not the most environmentally conscious career. I wanted to contribute, even if in a small way, to the efforts at work by the people at the Amazon Conservation Association for being dedicated to preserving such a vast and heartbreakingly crucial part of our ecosystem that has been threatened by wildfires, deforestation, and the effects of climate change.

I believe that writing and performing music can be a healing force, used for good, and not always for capitalizing on emotions and commodifying a personality or lifestyle. People need to be able to relate to each other, in times of joy, and especially in times of sorrow or struggle. The Wildfire Compilation, in partnership with Bandcamp and Saddle Creek, will be donating all of it’s funds raised to the ACA in hopes to lend a helping hand to those on the front lines of fighting climate change in places that may seem inaccessible to those of us unable to travel at length.
I chose 5 artists, Tara Jane O’Neil, Lomelda, John Andrews, Angel Olsen, and Kacey Johansing to interpret and cover my song “wildfire” that I wrote during the California Wildfires in 2017. All of these artists are dear friends and have all taught me a lot about the complexity of emotions in music.”
Released December 25th, 2019

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The first line-up announcement for End of The Road 2020! Pixies, King Krule, Angel Olsen, Big Thief, Bright Eyes + loads more.

Featured Track: “Alec Eiffel” by Pixies. Written by Charles Thompson,

“All Mirrors” is the type of record Patsy Cline would have made if she had access to synthesizers. It’s a dazzling tour de force, a record that centers on Olsen’s alternately pleading and commanding voice, surrounding it with lush, rococo swells of strings and electronics. That Olsen was always a great singer was not the question, but never has her prowess shone as brightly as it does in these stately, turbulent songs.

Angel Olsen’s second release, Burn Your Fire for No Witness, was a collection of her early work, where the production was dark-folk sparse. But for “All Mirrors”, she returned to the lush tapestry audiences first experienced on 2016’s My Woman, and the resulting recording is a taut, mesmerizing forty-nine minutes of sonic poetry. While there’s a bevy of modern elements at play—Stereolab-style space grooves on “Too Easy,” warm analog synth lines on “New Love Cassette,” a bouncy electronic twang on “What It Is”—the music here shimmers with a timeless patina. These songs are portraits of heartbreak, triumph, and love that could have been penned fifty years ago, yesterday, or a century from now. So despite its electronic flourishes, All Mirrors feels simultaneously of the moment and firmly embedded in the American songbook.

Olsen is a virtuoso vocalist, and across eleven tracks, she whispers as much as she wails, the oscillation of her instrument intoxicating. Opening track “Lark” sets the tone and finds her in the midst of a romantic detonation, offering up lines like, “This  city’s changed, it’s not what it was / Back  when you loved me.” By the wash of the strings on “Tonight,” where Olsen’s voice is husky, tired, and confessing that while her love remains, she’s better off alone, listeners are firmly in her grip. With its Spaghetti-Western guitar strum, “Summer” is another poignant peak, where Olsen radiates the kind of strength you only get from going through hell and coming out the other side. The closer, “Chance,” balances her extraordinary voice along with her silence against a sentiment that every lover knows but hates to hear: “Hard to say forever, love.” It’s a perfect punctuation for the album’s emotional odyssey, and it’ll make you want to experience it all over again.

On the title track she compares a lover’s smile to being “buried alive,” and on the bleak, ghostly “Impasse,” she icily sings, “Go on, on ahead / tell your friends I was wrong / Take it all out on me.” All of the album’s potential energy exploded in the live setting, where it became something else entirely—grand, gothy, doomy, and spectacular. All Mirrors is a tornado in an antique teacup: elegant craftsmanship and detailing, containing a powerful storm.

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Five artists cover Meg Duffy’s “placeholder” song, with all proceeds going toward the Amazon Conservation Association. Meg Duffy aka Hand Habits has announced the “Wldfire Covers” EP, which sees five artists cover Duffy’s placeholder song “wildfire.” The EP, which is led by Hand Habits’ original, features covers by Angel Olsen, Lomelda, Kacey Johansing, Tara Jane O’Neil and John Andrews & The Yawns.

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releases December 25th, 2019

Meg Duffy wrote “wildfire” during the California wildfires in 2017. In a statement, they said:

Being a touring musician eight months out of the year, you are exposed to a lot of varying degrees of climate change effects in a short period of time. From the gasoline that’s used to fuel touring vehicles, to the massive amount of plastic waste at the end of every show, to the carbon emissions released into the air by all the travel, it’s often not the most environmentally conscious career. I wanted to contribute, even if in a small way, to the efforts at work by the people at the Amazon Conservation Association for being dedicated to preserving such a vast and heartbreakingly crucial part of our ecosystem that has been threatened by wildfires, deforestation, and the effects of climate change. I believe that writing and performing music can be a healing force, used for good, and not always for capitalizing on emotions and commodifying a personality or lifestyle. People need to be able to relate to each other, in times of joy, and especially in times of sorrow or struggle. The Wildfire Compilation, in partnership with Bandcamp and Saddle Creek, will be donating all of its funds raised to the ACA in hopes to lend a helping hand to those on the front lines of fighting climate change in places that may seem inaccessible to those of us unable to travel at length. I chose five artists, Tara Jane O’Neil, Lomelda, John Andrews, Angel Olsen, and Kacey Johansing to interpret and cover my song “wildfire” that I wrote during the California Wildfires in 2017. All of these artists are dear friends and have all taught me a lot about the complexity of emotions in music.

Angel Olsen  “All Mirrors”, her fourth and quite possibly most anticipated release to date. Described by Angel as a record about, “owning up to your darkest side, finding the capacity for new love and trusting change”,

“Lark” Clocking in at over six minutes, and featuring an 11-piece string section, could easily be mistaken for Angel at her most bombastic and impersonal, yet there’s another side to Lark hiding beneath the dense arrangements. “Hiding out inside my head, it’s me again, it’s no surprise, I’m on my own now”for all the grandeur, this is Angel at her most personal and insular. It’s a track that almost feels like being trapped in your own head, there’s a claustrophobia to the strings and the repetitive pounding drums, yet at the centre of it all is a singular voice, whether accompanied by John Barry-like strings or a meditative Velvet Underground-like pulse, it’s always that voice, above all else, that demands your attention. It may lack the instant sugary thrills of Shut Up Kiss Me or the raw angsty charms of Hi-Five, yet as Lark slowly worms into your brain, it already feels like Angel’s finest work to date.

From her very earliest recordings, Angel Olsen has mined drama from her relationships with physically present but psychologically absent partners. Across her often-brilliant catalog, the Asheville singer/songwriter has sung candidly about staying with these partners despite recognizing their awful qualities.

“All Mirrors” is out October 4th via Jagjaguwar Records.

“Lark” by Angel Olsen from ‘All Mirrors’ out October 4th on Jagjaguwar Records.