Emily Haines is a woman who sees the importance of the cyclical nature of time. Now a decade on from the release of her album Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton, Knives Don’t Have Your Back (2006) and companion EP What Is Free To A Good Home? (2007) Emily returns with a new full length, solo album Choir of the Mind for release on September 15, 2017 Last Gang/eOne Details of the album were exclusively revealed by The Globe and Mail in a feature article earlier today, which notes, “Parts of the album that would normally have become string arrangements were instead turned into layers of vocals, the resulting impression being ‘a lullaby over a panic attack.’”
“Most of the songs on the album came to me out of some recent major changes in my life, and others were composed when my life felt more stable,” says Emily. “Of them all, Fatal Gift is the song that has lived with me the longest, through many incarnations. This is the right time for the definitive version to be heard. The song embodies for me the undeniable fact that no matter how high I climb, that voice, pulling me back to my essential self remains. We all pursue symbols of achievement, but utopian material promises are hollow.”
Choir of the Mind was for the most part composed and inhabited in stolen moments with her piano over the past few years of intensive work with Metric. The selected songs that would become this 13 track album were recorded over a number of weeks in 2016 at Giant Studios, which is housed in those familiar blocks in the West end of Toronto where Emily and Jimmy have each lived and worked for the past two decades. The album was co-produced by Emily and her longtime band mate, spiritual advisor and musical partner Jimmy Shaw (who also mixed the album), and engineered by Kenny Luong. It sees Sparklehorse drummer, Scott Minor return to duty on “Legend of the Wild Horse,” as he also played on the original Soft Skeleton recordings.
Always focused on the songwriting and the element of performance, Emily is planning to tour Choir of the Mind with limited engagements in unique and intimate venues, driven by her singular, inspiring and artistic vision for how she wishes to present her work to her audience. These highly anticipated upcoming tour dates and more information on Choir of the Mind will be announced shortly.