Love Valley, the fifth album from Canadian singer-songwriter Michael Bernard Fitzgerald, is released October 9th. It is a joyous exploration into a warm and intricate depiction of a place that exists somewhere for every one of us. For Fitzgerald that place is called Love Valley.
Today, we’re delighted to bring you the premiere of the latest single from the record, titled ‘I Love You’. Released alongside double A-side ‘Good Plates’, the new track makes use of spaces to perfection with a beautifully unpolished dry studio band arrangement which blossoms curious bouncy countrified bass and quirky atmospheres delivering this pure sentiment with Willy Mason style lo-fi grit…
Talking about the track, Fitzgerald states: “I wanted to write a song that was simply reaffirming. If you’re wondering – I’ll remind you. In the verses, the descriptions and visuals are detailed and simple – I love when simple English is poetic and beautiful in a song. The production is meant to be simple and fun, this was the last song written for the record and I think we recorded everything in a day or two.”
With a rustic sounding guitar and hushed voice, Fitzgerald’s lyrics describe a life he longs to build, touching on simple details. Love Valley expands to vaster sonic vistas incorporating organic percussion, cinematic sweeping backdrops and flourishes of sax nestled with Fitzgerald’s relaxed voice and colourful stories front and centre.
At OCL studios in Calgary, Canada, Fitzgerald and his long-time friend and producer Josh Rob Gwilliam worked closely to bring life to Love Valley. This allowed them to find concision and consistency throughout the record and the outcome is something fervent and purposeful. Each track is careful and quiet, allowing one to feel the intimacy of the project in the music. “This is the first record I’ve written completely on my own since my early recordings”, says Fitzgerald. “I decided to relearn how to write at home and penned most of this in the kitchen. Instead of writing about what I was experiencing, or what I had experienced I wrote about a dream for the future”, he explains. “I’ve started to wonder if these songs, that I sing hundreds of times a year, are slightly prophetic. With that in mind I wrote this thematic record about where I wanted to go, and how I wanted it to feel.”, he adds.
This year, amidst the difficult lockdown situation, Fitzgerald created a unique take on live concerts. He will embark on a Canada-wide tour setting up on private farms and performing intimate concerts in a travelling open-air venue called “The Greenbriar.”
The Greenbriar is a romantic, quaint venue decorated with canvas curtains, a wood floor and antique chairs. As the sun goes down, the space glows with string lights and people take in their first live music in months – no more than five families at a time. It is comfortable like a living room but has the feel of a concert venue. The same experience is coming to the UK for Spring 2021 and we certainly can’t wait.
Michael Bernard Fitzgerald and ‘The Greenbriar’ will finish a Calgary, Canada summer residency (53 shows) and then will tour Canada for 48 shows in September/October. This will be followed up in the spring with a tour through UK and US April/May/June of 2021.