Julianna Barwick is back to soothe and enchant us with Healing Is A Miracle, her first new record in four years, following the release of Will in 2016. The album sees her exploring rich sonic possibilities through improvisation and her singular, ethereal and immersive loop-based compositions. After recording all of her music on headphones, on Healing Is A Miracle she turned to studio monitors, which had been gifted to her by Jónsi and Alex (Somers). “The first song I remember making with those was the first song on the album, Inspirit.” she explains, “When I added the bass I really felt it in my body, you know, in a way you just wouldn’t with headphones… it was kind of euphoric and fun”, she explained. “I got really excited about making the record in that moment, and I think that really had an impact on the sounds I ended up making.”
A transitional album, Barwick recorded it in the aftermath of her move from New York to Los Angeles, with the help of Jónsi (Sigur Rós), Nosaj Thing and Mary Lattimore. Healing Is A Miracle, as the title suggests, takes its name from the processes of body healing. “You cut your hand, it looks pretty bad, and two weeks later it looks like it never happened… That’s kind of amazing, you know?”
The record is set for release on July 10th through Ninja Tune and Barwick has already shared two moving and mesmerizing singles, ‘Inspirit’ and ‘In Light’ featuring Jónsi. ‘In Light’ comes with a gorgeous accompanying video, directed by Joel Kazuo Knoernschild.
There’s just over one week to go before Le Guess Who? takes over Utrecht. With over 150 artists set to perform, how do we make sense of such a monumental line-up? We made a list of the artists we’re most excited to see and asked them for their recommendations.
Performing Sunday 12th November at Academiegebouw, curated by Perfume Genius
Photo: Vera Marmelo
Julianna Barwick’s celestial soundscapes are flush with emotional and sonic depth. Known for her ethereal and immersive loop-based compositions, Barwick’s mesmerizing songwriting is deeply inspired by her church choir upbringing in Louisiana and Missouri. Needless to say we can’t wait to see her perform at Le Guess Who?, and we asked her which bands she’s most looking forward to.
Russian trio Gnoomes have been making waves with two excellent albums drawing from genres like psych rock, prog and krautrock. The band crafts hypnotic, cinematic and blistering music and their second album Tschak!, released earlier this year, features a more expansive sound palette, including a bunch of old Soviet synths. So we are delighted to present this month's mixtape, compiled by Gnoomes. Like a mesmerising trip, their mix makes for an incredibly immersive listen encapsulating their own influences and styles.
Lower Dens – Brains [Domino]
Harmonia – Veterano [Brain]
Arthur Russell – You And Me Both [Rough Trade / Audika]
Brooklyn based experimental artist Julianna Barwick has a new album on the way called Will, which follows her celestial 2013’s Nepenthe. Busy with touring and projects all over the place, Barwick worked and conceived the album in many different locations, from New York to Asheville, North Carolina, to Lisbon, Portugal. “I love touring, but it can be a wild ride”, said Barwick. “You’re constantly adjusting, assimilating, and finding yourself in life-changing situations.”
The self-produced Will also sees Barwick bringing in guest collaborators, including Mas Ysa’s Thomas Arsenault, Dutch cellist Maarten Vos and percussionist Jamie Ingalls (Chairlift, Tanlines, Beverly).
Ahead of the album’s release on May 6th via Dead Oceans, Barwick has shared the gorgeous and dreamy single ‘Nebula’ and it comes with a video directed by Derrick Belcham. Watch it below.
After releasing her second studio LP Nepenthe under Dead Oceans at the end of August this year, Julianna Barwick didn’t waste time and hit the road with countless live shows around the world. She is still due to perform in six venues in the US in October and then comes back to Europe starting with Unsound Festival in Kraków, Poland. She will also visit Germany, Denmark, Portugal, Belgium and France. She teases us with the newly released video of her live performance at Judson Church in NY from the day Nepenthe was released. Calming sounds of her wondering notes peacefully executed by silent Icelanders makes everyone daydream about minimalistic mind escapades into the lands of harmony and reverie.
Back in June, we were dazzled by ‘One Half’, the first single lifted from Julianna Barwick‘s forthcoming third album Nepenthe. ‘One Half’ is now being offered with a befittingly stunning video directed by filmmaker Zia Anger. Here’s what Zia said about it:
“Julianna’s music, to me, evokes such a supernatural mind state – an existence that is without a principal body of laws. Because of this I wanted to make something that was lawless, that indulged the subconscious and also remained unexplainable. I’m fully aware of how tripped out this sounds but what is a music video if not at it’s core something without rules.”
Watch the video below and watch out for the release of Nepenthe on August 19th in Europe and a day later in North America via Dead Oceans.