David Gray today releases ‘If 8 Were 9’, the latest new track to arrive ahead of his forthcoming album Gold In A Brass Age, due for release on March 8, 2019, via IHT Records / AWAL Recordings.
The single comes with the announcement that tattoo artist Londonboy – responsible for the collection of striking artwork designs which accompany all 11 tracks on the album – will be marking the album’s release by offering free tattoos of the album’s artwork at his Peckham-based studios from 10:30am-6:30pm on release day, March 8, 2019. Tattoos taken from any of the 11 single covers or the album cover will be offered for free on a first come first served walk-in basis.
Produced by Ben de Vries, son of producer and soundtrack composer Marius de Vries, Gold In A Brass Age is Gray’s first album of new material in four years. In speaking about the warm-toned, album-closing track ‘If 8 Were 9’, which harnesses the dialled-back power of his burnished vocals, Gray says; “This is probably the craziest song I’ve ever recorded – and this is the pared down version. There’s fluttering piano, layers of guitar, loads of synths. It’s a sweet one to sing, especially the line ‘My heart leans out like these old river trees’”.
LondonBoy Tattooer’s distinctive, lucid illustrations, created especially for Gray, intersect with ideas on the regenerative cut-and-thrust of David’s adopted hometown of London, and the immutability of the natural world, both of which bear traces across Gold In A Brass Age (which takes its title from Raymond Carver’s short story Blackbird Pie). Fittingly, the striking album cover depicts an Emperor moth with the City of London captured between its wingspan.
Whilst you’ll still recognise Gray’s gravelly rasp across the new album, the singing is softer, sweeter, more intimate and occasionally falsetto. It’s part of a song-writing shake-up that defines a more intuitive approach. Using a cut and paste approach to the arrangement of songs, lyrics have been transformed, with couplets closer to poetry, and whilst his guitar and piano playing remains, it’s the ushering in of electronica and the exploring of alternative sound textures alongside new production techniques that come to the fore.
Listen to ‘If 8 Were 9’ – BELOW:
Gold In A Brass Age will be David Gray’s eleventh album in a career that spans over 25 years, several Brit and Grammy nominations, and three No.1 UK albums, including the breakout multi-platinum White Ladder.
Londonboy Tattooer studio:
Rye LaneZ Tattoo
210 Blemheim Grove
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