Posts Tagged ‘Marissa Nadler’

Now that the summer seems to have finally been driven away, it is time for the dark autumn soundtracks, for which Marissa Nadler immediately sets the bar particularly high with the beautiful “The Path Of The Clouds
Marissa Nadler has been building a special and very beautiful oeuvre for 17 years now. I sometimes miss an album by the American musician, but fortunately I did not miss the release this week “The Path Of The Clouds”. Also on her new album Marissa Nadler draws for atmospheric and dreamy but also some dark sounds, for beautiful vocals and for a unique and often somewhat dark atmosphere that comes back in the equally dark stories. Compared to many of her previous albums, “The Path Of The Clouds” features a fuller and more melodic sound, which further enhances the power of the American musician’s songs. The umpteenth beautiful album by Marissa Nadler and perhaps her best.

Since her great debut album “Ballads Of Living And Dying“, which to my surprise is already 17 years old, I have been following the career of the American musician Marissa Nadler.

I have not always done that intensively, because although I have quite a few albums by the musician from Nashville in the closet, there are now also a lot missing.

In recent years I have certainly not been paying attention, because after the excellent Strangers from 2016, I have not noticed “Bury Your Name” from the same year, “For My Crimes” from 2018, “Instead Of Dreaming” from 2021 and “the Droneflower” released in 2019 and made together with rock musician Stephen Brodsky. The last album is not entirely dedicated to me, but all other albums certainly deserved a place on this BLOG with For My Crimes as a provisional favourite.
Fortunately, Marissa Nadler is also popping up this week with a new album, The Path Of The Clouds. The music of the American musician was originally mainly labelled indie folk and folk-noir, but in recent years Marissa Nadler has shifted towards indie rock.
The Path Of The Clouds” can work in all three of these genres and, like almost all other albums by the American musician, is a pretty dark or even dark album with a lot of influences from the ambient this time. The album also sounds dreamy at the same time, which creates a unique atmosphere.
Marissa Nadler has a beautiful voice, which could work well in sweet and whisper-soft folk songs, but somehow her music always has something dark. It is no different on “The Path Of The Clouds“, which despite the beautiful sounds and the beautiful voice of Marissa Nadler often sounds a bit spooky. It sometimes gives chills, but the special atmosphere on her albums is also the strength of the American musician.

The Path Of The Clouds” also does beautifully on rainy, dark and chilly evenings, although I keep the curtains closed and the door locked just to be sure. The music of Marissa Nadler was extremely sober in the past, but in recent years her music sounds just a bit fuller, which is partly the result of the collaboration with other musicians.
On The Path Of The Clouds, Mary Lattimore, Amber Webber (Black Mountain, Lightning Dust), Jesse Chandler (Mercury Rev), Emma Ruth Rundle and Simon Raymonde (Cocteau Twins, Lost Horizons) contribute to the music of Marissa Nadler, which still sounds subdued, but less Spartan and is just as easily provided with fairytale harp sounds as with gritty guitars.
The somewhat fuller and certainly more melodic sound on the new album has fortunately not been at the expense of the special atmosphere that Marissa Nadler creates on her albums and the vocals of the American musician are also wonderful.

On “The Path Of The Clouds”, Marissa Nadler draws for a series of beautiful songs and, as usual, for a number of dark stories such as the one about the canoe trip of the freshly married Glen and Bessie Hyde, of whom only one eventually returned and the story of the mysterious plane hijacker D.B. Cooper, who jumped out of the plane with his ransom and a parachute and disappeared from the face of the earth.
The bar has been set high for 17 years within the oeuvre of Marissa Nadler, but “The Path Of The Clouds “could just be her best album so far and every time I listen to the album it is even more beautiful, more urgent and more enchanting.


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Marissa Nadler is releasing a new album, “The Path Of Clouds” on October 29th via Sacred Bones and Bella Union. shared its second single, “If I Could Breathe Underwater” via a video for the song that fittingly features Nadler underwater. The song features harp playing from longtime friend Mary Lattimore of Nadler’s. Jenni Hensler directed the video, which was partially shot with 16mm film camera.

Nadler had this to say in a press release: “When I wrote ‘If I Could Breathe Underwater,’ I was contemplating the possibilities of possessing various superhuman powers: teleportation, shapeshifting, energy projection, aquatic breathing, extrasensory perception, and time travel to name a few. As a lyrical device, I married those powers with events in my life, wondering if and how they could change the past or predict the future. I loved working on the melody for this song and bringing the choruses to their climaxes. Mary’s layered, hallucinatory shimmers really echo the netherworld of the story.”

Hensler had this to say about the video: “This song took on many meanings to me and I love that about it. How beauty and tragedy collide. Dreaming of having supernatural powers to change reality and have the ability to live and breathe underwater. It could also speak to the duality of existence. That we all have inner personas or shadow selves, and how we envision those different masks we wear. I chose to make something that touched on the idea of duality and the inner persona. To connect to the two worlds.”

Previously Nadler had shared the album’s first single, “Bessie Did You Make It ?” via a video for it. Nadler wrote and recorded the album during the pandemic and was partially inspired by binging reruns of Unsolved Mysteries as she “began to notice parallels between many of its stories and her own life,” as a press release puts it. On The Path of the Clouds she worked with various collaborators, including Mary Lattimore, Simon Raymonde (of Cocteau Twins and Lost Horizons and the head of Bella Union), multi-instrumentalist Milky Burgess, Jesse Chandler (Nadler’s piano teacher and a member of Mercury Rev and Midlake), Emma Ruth Rundle, and Black Mountain’s Amber Webber. Seth Manchester (Lingua Ignota, Battles, and Lightning Bolt) mixed the album.

If I Could Breathe Underwater, off of my upcoming album The Path of the Clouds. The album is out October 29th on Sacred Bones Records and Bella Union Records.

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Hauntingly beautiful vocals paired with a minimal musical backdrop makes for a truly inspired selection of emotional and beguiling songs. Marissa Nadler announced a new album, “The Path of the Clouds” and shared its first single, “Bessie Did You Make It” via a video for it. The Path of the Clouds is due out October 29th via Sacred Bones and Bella Union.

Nadler wrote and recorded the album during the pandemic and was partially inspired by binging reruns of Unsolved Mysteries as she “began to notice parallels between many of its stories and her own life,” as a press release puts it. On The Path of the Clouds she worked with various collaborators, including Mary Lattimore, Simon Raymonde (of Cocteau Twins and Lost Horizons and the head of Bella Union), multi-instrumentalist Milky Burgess, Jesse Chandler (Nadler’s piano teacher and a member of Mercury Rev and Midlake), Emma Ruth Rundle, and Black Mountain’s Amber Webber. Seth Manchester (Lingua Ignota, Battles, and Lightning Bolt) mixed the album.

Thou’s Mitch Wells directed the “Bessie, Did You Make It?” video and had this to say in a press release: “When I first got the chance to hear Marissa’s new album, and was asked, ‘Which song would you like to do a video for?’ I sort of panicked because literally every song is SO good. It was like being at a buffet of all your favourite food and only being able to choose one thing to eat. I had a blast making the video, but there was always the pressure of ‘don’t let down the song.’ It’s such a beautiful opening track and I’m really lucky I was given the chance to be a part of it.”

Nadler’s last album was 2018’s “For My Crimes”.

So glad that Marissa releases all this extra material. I often like the demo versions better than the final thing, it’s so intimate and real. Like having a friend show you a song they are working on.

Bessie, Did You Make It? from the album “The Path of the Clouds” Out 10/29/21 on Sacred Bones Records and Bella Union Records

Released March 20th, 2020

MARISSA NADLER The Path Of The Clouds Exclusive LP With Autographed Print

“The Path of the Clouds”, Marissa Nadler’s ninth solo album, is the most stylistically adventurous, lyrically transfixing, and melodically sophisticated collection of songs in her already rich discography. Gripped by wanderlust while suddenly housebound at the start of the pandemic in 2020, Nadler escaped into writing, and came back with a stunning set of songs about metamorphosis, love, mysticism, and murder. Blurring the line between reality and fantasy and moving freely between past and present, these 11 deeply personal, self-produced songs find Nadler exploring new landscapes, both sonic and emotional.

One of Nadler’s distractions during the 2020 quarantine was binging reruns of Unsolved Mysteries. As she watched, she began to notice parallels between many of its stories and her own life. What began as a writing exercise became the bedrock of her song writing process, as she came to inhabit the narratives that had so fascinated her. In “Bessie, Did You Make It?,” Nadler inverts the canon of the murder ballad, crafting a narrative of female empowerment and survival. “The Path of the Clouds” tells the story of the infamous hijacker D.B. Cooper, but the song isn’t just about jumping out of an airplane, faking your death, and making a grand exit. It’s a meditation on perseverance and transformation, a salute to mastering one’s fate. “Well, Sometimes You Just Can’t Stay” details the ingenious plans of the only successful escapees from Alcatraz, as well as the lingering enigma that surrounds their history. The lyrical twist on the chorus turns a tale about a prison break into a humorous, shoegazing country song.

While she’s always been a brilliant guitarist, Nadler challenged herself to expand her palette for The Path of the Clouds, experimenting with synthetic textures that make the album feel untethered from time and space. A majestic grandeur sweeps through songs such as “Elegy,” shooting the listener into the stratosphere as synths swirl and entwine with Nadler’s celestial mezzo-soprano. Nadler also learned to play piano during the pandemic’s isolation, and she composed many of the songs on the album on keys rather than guitar, which further contributed to their exploratory feel. These songs are unmistakably Marissa Nadler’s, but they sound free to go places she’s never gone before.

Nadler tracked the skeletons of the songs at home and then sent them to some choice collaborators, including experimental harpist Mary Lattimore and Simon Raymonde, the Cocteau Twins bassist and her Lost Horizons collaborator. Multi-instrumentalist Milky Burgess, having recently worked on the soundtrack to the film “Mandy“, adds intricate melodic power throughout the album. Jesse Chandler, Nadler’s piano teacher (as well as a member of Mercury Rev and Midlake), plays winding woodwinds and plaintive piano to luminous effect. Fellow singer-songwriter Emma Ruth Rundle contributes a slinky guitar solo on “Turned Into Air,” while Black Mountain’s Amber Webber steps in as a vocal foil to Nadler, a ghostly apparition in the distance of “Elegy.” Seth Manchester, known for his work with Lingua Ignota, Battles, and Lightning Bolt, mixed the album at Machines with Magnets in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Manchester added dimension to the songs’ atmospheric beauty with screeching feedback and distorted guitars. Stripped of the ethereal reverb that often swaddles her resonant vocals, Nadler’s delivery now stings and pierces with newfound immediacy and confidence.

As a songwriter, Nadler is as direct and urgent as she has ever been. There’s no coded language amid the bleak lows and exalted highs of songs like “Elegy,” “Lemon Queen,” “Storm,” and “Tried Not to Look Back.” Memories are painted with highly detailed imagery, and Nadler, also a visual artist, uses that eye not only to tell a story but to transport the listener there.

The Path of the Clouds showcases the power of an artist at the peak of her powers nearly 20 years into an acclaimed career as a songwriter and singer. Coming a long way from the spare dream folk of her earlier work, she has remained inspired and continues to evolve, open to new ideas and directions. The proof is right here, in Nadler’s most ambitious and complex album yet

Having spent the better part of her adult life on a fairly continuous tour, American singer-songwriter Marissa Nadler found a small silver lining peeking through the darkness of this ongoing era. During this unexpected time she had the opportunity to record a collection of covers to serve as a salve of serenity and comfort.

The feelings of homesickness and loss, detachment and displacement, of loneliness and sorrow- they are omnipotent right now. These are the themes explored in this collection.

Townes Van Zandt’s My Proud Mountain, Simon and Garfunkel’s Old Friends / Bookends, as well Bob Dylan’s beautiful deep cut I Was Young When I Left Home speak of a desire to return to a place of comfort. America’s Lonely People serves as a beautiful anthem to the lonely. The Santo and Johnny’s classic, Sleep Walk, has long been a favourite and so the vocal version, popularized by Betsy Brye in 1959, which is here reinvented with a evocatively modern twist. This sense of sleepwalking feels like a very current pervasive sentiment, a longing to drift away into a dream world, which is also prevalent in the King Crimson’s song Moonchild.

“Instead of Dreaming” has been recorded and produced by Marissa Nadler with an added touch of beautiful layering by multi-instrumentalist Milky Burgess.

Released May 7th, 2021

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In case you weren’t up in the middle of the night, my friend Nicole Atkins, and I covered the dreamy classic song Mr. Blue. We also made some paintings together.
Thanks for checking it out !


I’m very excited to present to you this collaboration with my friend Nicole Atkins, tracked on Valentine’s Day in the midst of an ice storm. We recorded a cover of the Fleetwood’s ultra dreamy classic, Mr. Blue. With Milky Burgess

released April 2nd, 2021

“Mr. Blue”, written by The Fleetwoods.

Vocals- Nicole Atkins
Vocals – Marissa Nadler
Guitar, synth- Milky Burgess

Cocteau Twins, former CT bassist Simon Raymonde and Richie Thomas of Dif Juz are gearing up to release their second Lost Horizons albums, In Quiet Moments, on February 26th via Bella Union Records. It’s a double and packed with notable guest vocalists to help them achieve their cinematic vision. The terrific first half, which came out digitally back in November, features guest vocals from John Grant, Porridge Radio, Penelope Isles, former Midlake frontman Tim Smith and more, while Pt 2 features Marissa Nadler, Ural Thomas, The Innocence Mission’s Karen Peris, and more.


As you’d expect from two men who released records during the ’80s arty heyday of 4AD, the artwork is as important as the music itself. The packaging for the Deluxe Edtion vinyl of In Quiet Moments is especially lovely and comes on ocean blue and green vinyl, with a wide-spinned sleeve on uncoated/reverse board and is housed in a cool PVC outer sleeve with printed text. (There’s also a sticker, for those looking to cover logos on your laptop or decorating your fridge.) We’ve got a special edition in our store where the first 100 orders come with an art print postcard signed by Simon Raymonde.  

While we wait for the whole thing to drop, you can listen toIn Quiet Moments Part 1 now along with the Marissa Nadler song, “Marie,” from Part 2:

Releases February 26th, 2021

Lost Horizons

Lost Horizons are back with another preview of their “In Quiet Moments” album, this time teaming up with Marissa Nadler for “Marie“. The new track arrives with a video created by Nadler, with editing and direction by Penelope Isles’ Jack Wolter. Lost Horizons say of their new outing, “I don’t think there was ever a second I wasn’t going to find a song for Marissa to sing on the new album track. So much cool stuff came out of our last collaborations on Ojalá, indeed I think we ended up recording four songs from the original idea of doing one! Marissa is a really great & generous collaborator as she really throws herself in deep and commits to it fully. That is a rare and beautiful gift and Richie and I appreciate it enormously.”

“Marie” marks Lost Horizons’ second release of 2021 after Ural Thomas collaboration “In Quiet Moments” that landed earlier this month.

They add, “It was a beast of a track to mix I’ll be honest, and that had nothing to do with Marissa’s vocals, in fact they were a breeze to mix. But the initial music that Richie and I improvised in our basement studio in Brighton was a bit messy and we didn’t use a click or anything to keep tempo so fixing anything later was a lost cause, but it is such a cool piece that I loved creating (I think i put 4 maybe 5 bass parts on with my old trusty Fender VI string bass guitar!) that even when it’s kinda falling apart during that instrumental section near the end, I still love it. It probably sounds like it took half an hour to mix but the truth is it took weeks of starting it, scrapping it, starting over, scrapping it, etc. And yes, I fully intend to ask Marissa to contribute to our next one too.”

In Quiet Momentswhich will follow 2017’s Ojalá, will also feature previous outings “One For Regret” featuring Porridge Radio, “Grey Tower” featuring Tim Smith of Midlake, Then there is the John Grant collaboration “Cordelia” and “I Woke Up With An Open Heart” featuring The Hempolics.

Lost Horizons is a rare sighting of two gifted musicians who, for different reasons, have been largely absent from music-making for the last 20 years. Yet their debut record Ojalá is proof of a telepathic relationship through music, established when the pair first became collaborators and friends in the eighties.  Raymonde was the bassist of the seminal Cocteau Twins, where the vein of melancholia went very deep. Even before the band had signed to 4AD, the label were releasing records by the instrumental quartet Dif Juz, arguably the first word in post-rock, 15 years before it became a trend: Richie Thomas was their anchor; the engine room of their wondrous free-flow. The two bands became friends, and toured together.

Taken from the album ‘In Quiet Moment’s’ due 26th February via Bella Union Records:


Marissa Nadler has released a new single, and it’s a collaboration with John Cale. Listen to “Poison,” plus another new Nadler song called “If We Make It Through the Summer,” below (via KRO Records). Marissa Nadler said of the collaboration in a statement:

Sometimes it’s best not to know in advance; that’s what I continually remind myself about how this duet with legendary songwriter John Cale came together. Had I known that Justin [Raisen] and Lawrence [Rothman] would arrange for Cale to sing “Poison” with me before I wrote or recorded it, I cannot be certain I wouldn’t have become frozen with hesitations and second-guessing.

How do you even start to go about writing a duet with a member of the Velvet Underground? Surely I might have nervously changed the lyric that accidentally namechecks a title of a Velvet Underground song (“Run Run Run”), at the very least. For me, Cale is one of the most influential rock musicians, remaining admirably hard to pin down. His appearance on this song was a complete surprise to me, but the instant I heard it I knew that this was the way the song was meant to be heard.

Marissa Nadler’s latest album, For My Crimes, came out last year.

Song written by Marissa Nadler

Guitar, vocals- Marissa Nadler Featuring guest vocals by John Cale.

I have a new side-project, Droneflower, out on Sacred Bones Records with my friend Stephen Brodsky. Steve, a fellow Massachusetts native and member of Cave In and Mutoid Man, worked on this full length collaboration mostly at my old apartment in Jamaica Plain and some at his place in Brooklyn. We co-produce this album and I can’t wait for you to hear the whole thing!

Brodsky met Nadler for the first time in 2014 at Brooklyn’s Saint Vitus Bar when he came to see her play on her July tour, and they quickly became friends. Both of them had been wanting to explore songwriting that didn’t fit into their existing projects, and they soon became energized by the prospect of working together. One of the first ideas they discussed was a horror movie soundtrack, and while Droneflower isn’t that, it is a richly cinematic album. It’s easy to imagine much of the record set to images, though it wasn’t composed that way.

The first song that came together was “Dead West,” based around a beautiful acoustic guitar piece Brodsky wrote while living on Spy Pond, just outside of Nadler’s home base in Boston. By the time they started working on the song earnest, Brodsky had moved to Brooklyn. Nadler added lyrics and vocal melodies remotely, and even from a distance it was obvious there was real kismet in the collaboration.


“It’s is a sprawling and expansive exercise in contrasts. It is the sound of the war between the brutal and the ethereal, the dark and the light, the past and the present, and the real and imagined.” The limited edition sold out really fast of this, but the vinyl is available at Sacred Bones. You can also  order a limited edition by joining the Sacred Bones Record Society : Edition of 150 hand-numbered copies, comes with alternate screen printed, wrap around sleeve, wax sealed LP pressed on Society-exclusive clear-and-yellow marble vinyl and with Society-exclusive mixed tape,

All the songs on Droneflower were recorded in home studios.
released April 26th, 2019