TORONTO, ON – August 17, 2017 – Gill Landry has announced the release of his new studio album, Love Rides A Dark Horse, due Oct. 6 on ATO Records. The first single and video from the 9-song collection, “Berlin,” was premiered today at American Songwriter. Following his critically acclaimed, self-titled 2015 ATO debut, Love Rides A Dark Horse reflects the better part of a year Landry spent picking up the pieces of a failed relationship. Touring and recording alone during this period, he wrote with unflinching honesty about depression and expectation and desire.
“Love and hate need each other for either to have meaning and I feel like it’s the same way with people,” says Landry. “I’d like to believe love always wins coming down the stretch-it just might not be the way you envisioned it. In my experience love often isn’t what I expected and wouldn’t be half as good if it was. That basically is what I wrote this album about. The dark horse is the unexpected winner.”
Love Rides A Dark Horse breaks new ground for Landry with contributions from fiddler Ross Holmes (Mumford & Sons, Bruce Hornsby), keyboard player Skylar Wilson (Andrew Combs, Rayland Baxter), and drummer Logan Matheny (Roman Candle, Rosebuds). The songs spill over with gorgeous female harmonies by Klara Soderberg (First Aid Kit), Karen Elson and Odessa. Landry’s own vocals are front and center with the arrangements built around his husky baritone, often calling to mind Leonard Cohen and Tom Waits. The approach allowed him to explore a more seductive, stripped-down sound that embraces a hushed sense of intimacy with lyrical narratives casting aside romanticism in favor of reality.
“A little over two short years ago, I was set to be married to a woman I loved very much, had just won my second Grammy with Old Crow Medicine Show, and life was good by all perceivable standards,” continues Landry. “However, I was deeply unsatisfied artistically and needed to leave the band. After the first year of touring my last album, I swore to myself I wasn’t writing another goddamned broken-hearted love song, but then my lover took flight and I found myself alone, worn out, disillusioned, and heartbroken in a way I hadn’t known before. But, I wanted to find a light in the darkness. This album is more of ‘a map out of the darkness’ than ‘an invitation to it.’
Landry wrote the majority of the album in December 2016 while staying in Washington state with the cold wind and rain pounding in from the North Pacific. He then headed back to Nashville living above his friend Nikki Lane’s where he wrote the remainder of the material. He recorded the album in a cabin in the country outside Whites Creek, Tennessee and then went back on the road where he finished vocals and final pieces in Stockholm, The Isle of Skye, and Blue River, Oregon.
Plans are in the works for Landry to be on the road supporting Love Rides A Dark Horse, through the remainder of 2017 and well into 2018. After a handful of U.S. shows, including Americanafest in September and a showcase at Rockwood Music Hall in New York City on October 2, he’ll head to Europe in November to open a run of shows for Ian Felice. A full-fledged U.S. tour to follow will be announced shortly.
Landry’s music has been called a “four-way intersection between Dylan-inspired folk-rock, atmospheric Americana, dusty cowboy songs and street busker ballads” by Rolling Stone, while NPR Music praised his songs as “sad, sweet, acoustical ruminations.” Since departing Old Crow Medicine Show, he has made festival appearances in the US and UK and toured with Ben Harper, Justin Townes Earle, Warren Haynes and The Wood Brothers among others.. With the release of ‘Love Rides A Dark Horse,’ his stark, gripping songs that set out to untangle the mystery of the human experience is sure to be further embraced by his growing audience. And yet if any artist is built to embrace the intertwined experience of accomplishment and struggle, it’s Landry.
“Since making my last record, I destroyed all the pillars of my life intentionally and by accident. I found myself wondering what the hell I was doing, and had to slowly start rebuilding,” concludes Landry. “When you go back to the ground level in any field, with your toes in the dirt, you’ve got to really want to do it. I already came up through the clubs, playing all the small gigs, busking the streets, and also got the delusions of grandeur that come from playing in much bigger places. When you’ve been through it and you know how much work it is to start from the bottom, you have to ask yourself if it’s truly what you want. Here we are, so I guess the answer is yes.”
LOVE RIDES A DARK HORSE track listing:
Gill Landry Tour Dates:
September 14 – Nashville, TN – High Watt
October 2 – New York, NY – Rockwood Music Hall (stage 2)
November 22 – Manchester, UK – Night & Day
November 23 – Edinburgh, UK – The Voodoo Room
November 24 – Newcastle upon Tyne, UK – Live Theatre
November 26 – Nottingham, UK – The Maze
November 27 – London, UK – The Borderline
November 28 – Bristol, – UK – Thekla
November 29 – Birmingham, UK – Hare & Hounds
November 30 – Leeds, UK – Brudenell Social Club
** supporting Ian Felice