“PRAYER FOR THE DYING” PREMIERES TODAY ON NPR
“She knows how to coax a melody into the sunlight.” – Entertainment Weekly
Irish singer-songwriter Lisa Hannigan‘s highly anticipated new album, At Swim,will be released August 19 via Cadence Music via ATO Records. The release follows her second full-length album, Passenger,which NPR Music praised as “lush and beautiful,” while Rolling Stone furthered, “Her voice is light and agile, her phrasing like exquisite plumage, and her folksy songs move with deceptive power, sailing on guitars, strings and Irish drama.” “Prayer for the Dying,” the first track to be revealed off At Swim, is premiering today on NPR. The song is also available with album pre-order.
After touring in support of Passenger for nearly two years, Hannigan began writing songs for her new record. Although she struggled to write new material while living in London, away from home and from what she describes as her “usual anchors and points of reference,” Hannigan had a breakthrough when she got an email out of the blue from Aaron Dessner-guitarist in The National and producer of Dark Was the Night and records by Sharon Van Etten, This is the Kit and Frightened Rabbit among others. Working with Dessner and rediscovering the collaborative spirit she’d missed in Dublin enabled Hannigan to see her life in London in a different light. Hannigan and Dessner (guitar) started recording the new record with Logan Coale (bass) and Ross Turner (drums) in rural Hudson, NY at Future Past Studio. In the weeks that followed, Dessner produced the record at his home studio. “He didn’t want it to sound too pretty,” Hannigan says. “He wanted it to have a texture rather than have big arcing melodies.” At Swim is in part about homesickness and isolation as well as about love.
To celebrate the release, Hannigan and Dessner appeared at Boston Calling this past weekend and they will also perform at Eaux Claires Festival August 12-13. More U.S. tour dates to be added soon.
Hannigan’s 2008 Mercury Prize-nominated debut Sea Sew was released to widespread acclaim-The Los Angeles Times described the music as “charmingly idiosyncratic,” while People Magazine called it, “dreamy.” In addition to her solo work, Hannigan sang with Damien Rice for seven years, touring worldwide. She contributed significantly to Rice’s platinum-selling debut O and critically lauded follow-up 9. She also sang with the legendary Herbie Hancock on a rendition of Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are A-Changin” for his Imagine Project alongside the Chieftains and Toumani Diabaté.
In 2015, Hannigan made her film debut, providing the voice for a Selkie in the Oscar-nominated Irish animation Song of the Sea. Since then, she’s contributed a cover of “Danny Boy” to the TV series Fargo, as well as vocals for Steve Price’s scores for Gravity-which won an Oscar-and Fury.
2. Prayer for the Dying
7. We, The Drowned
10. Funeral Suit