words by tom johnson
Collaboration is often the seed to great new pastures, and so it proves to be with Loma, the flourishing new project from Emily Cross and Dan Duszynski of Cross Record, and Shearwater’s Jonathan Meiburg, who continue to grow subtle but ostensibly great landscapes with their fascinating new project; one that comes to full fruition with the release of their self-titled debut album, which is released on February 16th via Sub Pop Records.
If debut track Black Willow was the darkly peculiar introduction, and Relay Runner the propulsive outlier, then new track “Joy”, which we’re extremely pleased to unveil here today, is the earthy, plaintive heart at the centre of their work, an yearning moment of restraint as the night comes circling in.
Cross’ beautiful voice has been the pertinent aspect of Loma’s work thus far, but here it feels more like the central character in a bigger story, weaving its way both in and out of shot, as the beautifully detailed instrumental, with its quietly rousing drum beat and tenderly plucked guitars, paints something wholly atmospheric and illusory, the swelling adornments feeling like the soundtrack to a story we’re not really supposed to know in full, that we can only watch from afar.
Richly antiquated but evocative and dynamic at the same time, Joy rolls out like a wide and scorched Cormac McCarthy landscape, where the space between the words is just as important as those spoken, where the battle between light and dark isn’t some great romantic decree, but is simply the way of things.
“Let the fire run over the hill, susurrating and roaring,” Cross sings, free of context and clarification, “and my heart breaks cover again, and I’m running in the open, to the million, million waves of joy.”
Because what else is there to do?
‘Loma’ is released on February 16th via Sub Pop
The band are also announcing a European tour,and will play the following dates:
25 May – Kortnijk, Belgium, De Kreun
26 May – Amsterdam, NL, London Calling Festival, Paradiso
27 May – Brussels, Belgium, Botanique
30th May – Brighton, The Hope
31st May – London, The Lexington
1st June – Bristol, Rough Trade
3rd June – Manchester, Gullivers
4th June – Leeds, Headrow House
5 June – Glasgow, Hug and Pint
7 June – Dublin, Whelan’s
8 June – Liverpool, Buyers Club