Annie Hart is best known as one-third of Au Revoir Simone, the beloved all-female synth trio that counts David Lynch as a superfan (and also recently appeared on Twin Peaks). But with the eight tracks on her solo debut, Impossible Accomplice (Instant Records, Sept. 15), Annie will emerge as an electrifying artist and producer in her own right.
Today, she also shares the new video for ‘Hard To Be Still’ via Vogue. The DIY video was made by Annie in her basement, and showcases her newly pared down sound. She tells Vogue, “For this album I wanted to narrow down and perfect every element. Each instrument I need to be able to play live. It’s more minimal. There’s less to arrange. You have to imagine each aspect a little more fully.” Watch below…
Annie says of the song, “I have never been able to write a normal love song in all my days with Au Revoir Simone or before, despite having been with the same person since I was 21. They always had some element of tragedy, betrayal, or melancholy lumped in no matter what I did to fight it. Then when we were on tour in Portland, I stayed at a friend’s place who had this awesome Roland drum pad and a beautiful Rickenbacker bass. I hooked those up to my computer to record and suddenly everything started materializing: the bouncing lo-fi drum beat and rudimentary bass line seemed so fun and perfect together.
“By some strange miracle of being away from my husband and small child, I was finally able to properly say thank you to him for being supportive and doing his share as a parent, which a lot of women don’t get. I was also noticing some other men around at the time, who were hitting on me but were blatantly just after the obvious and weren’t really seeing me for me. And there was my husband, who knew all my neurotic tendencies and workaholic nature and never stopped loving me more surely or evenly for over 10 years. I’m glad I finally have that one nice love song about him.”
During Au Revoir Simone’s hiatus, Annie has been crafting pop songs on classic synthesizers, with a less-is-more approach, writing and engineering the record on her own in the basement of her Brooklyn home, sneaking sessions in while her children were sleeping. Greatly influenced by the spare synthesizer sounds of Laurie Spiegel and the post-punk sensibility of artists like Tubeway Army, Annie has embraced her love of meticulously crafting the perfect tone to match the emotion of a song. “Be it melancholy, longing, happiness or simple desire, there is no better way to explain my innermost world than by going past words and into the intuitive and visceral feeling that a particular sound can evoke.”
In songs such as the first single, “Hard To Be Still” (featured on an episode of Netflix series, Gypsy, starring Naomi Watts), Annie cuts back the layers to reveal a rawer version of the dreamy synth pop her band was famous for forging. Solo, Annie has opened for artists such as M. Ward and Neko Case, and will be playing a handful of shows this summer in support of the new record.
Annie will be coming to the Europe in October for a handful of live dates, full details are as follows: