Eve Owen today announces her debut album Don’t Let The Ink Dry – produced by The National’s Aaron Dessner – set for release on 8th May, via 37d03d Records.
She has also shared her sweeping, evocative new single “So Still For You,” which can be heard now via its video directed by Owen’s sister and frequent collaborator, Hannah…
“‘So Still For You’ is about how fleeting love can be, but how permanent words are,” explains Owen. “By sharing my love in a song, it lasts forever.”
Of the video, Hannah Owen says, “We had a clear idea of what the song meant to us but we were equally really in love with the idea of seeing what came naturally once a camera was put in front of Eve. It’s so lovely to work as a two-person team. Every idea is valid and a strong contender—we can just play and follow whatever feels fun. The song is led by a delicate balance of vulnerability and wild power. I think for the video we just wanted to explore both themes honestly and see where it led us visually.”
Don’t Let the Ink Dry is a work of raw sensitivity and uncontained imagination, brought to life over the course of three transformative years. During that time, the 20-year-old Owen spent her summer holidays writing and recording in New York with Dessner, immersing herself in a creative exploration that provided welcome refuge from her sometimes-troubled school life. As she discovered an entirely new sense of freedom and belonging, Owen devised a sonic language all her own: frenetic yet delicate, mercurial yet nuanced enough to capture the most ephemeral of feelings.
Produced by Dessner at Long Pond Studio (a converted barn and old farmhouse deep in the Hudson Valley), Don’t Let the Ink Dry finds Owen embracing her affinity for folk music while pursuing the endless possibilities in electronic experimentation. With the help of musicians like multi-instrumentalist Rob Moose (Bon Iver, Perfume Genius) and pianist Thomas Bartlett (aka Doveman, who’s played with David Byrne, St. Vincent, and Father John Misty, among others), she and Dessner arrived at a detailed but deliberately wayward sound.
Working from an abundant batch of songs Owen had sketched over the years, the two collaborators dreamed up their kaleidoscopic sonic palette by espousing an unbridled playfulness—an element evident in such experiments as recording the whir of a washing machine, then using that sample as the foundation for one of the album’s outtakes. “What I enjoyed most was that there were no rules,” says Owen. “I could say or do whatever I wanted without feeling judged, which is the most wonderful feeling when you’re working creatively with someone.” Dessner adds, “We ultimately recorded more than 40 songs over three years, and this first album feels like a collection of them. I enjoyed the process immensely. We felt free to imagine and chase whatever sounds or arrangements inspired us. In the middle of that time, she helped me make a National song called ‘Where Is Her Head,’ which she fearlessly sang lead on. There’s so much Eve is capable of and I’m grateful to know her.”
In choosing the title for her debut, Owen drew inspiration from a bit of instruction given in a recent screenprinting class. “It’s got to do with impermanence versus permanence,” she says. “I really like the idea that you can go through all these different changes in your life, but the root of who you are will always stay the same.” And as Don’t Let The Ink Dry gets intensely candid about her struggles with anxiety and alienation, the album reveals a profound truth about vulnerability’s role in self-preservation. “I’ve always trusted people immediately with no question, but when you do come across the bullies, it reminds you that not everyone should have all that knowledge and insight into your insecurities,” Owen says. “The odd thing about Hudson was that it was the first place I felt I could be honest and protected. I would love it if people listened to this album and ended up feeling the same sort of comfort in their own vulnerability.”
Eve Owen tour dates…
1st February – Brussels, BE @ AB Box^
13th February – London, UK @ Servant Jazz Quarters*
2nd May – Leeds, UK @ Live at Leeds
5th May – Brooklyn, NY @ Union Pool
14th May – Brighton, UK @ The Great Escape
25th July – Topcliffe, UK @ Deer Shed Festival
^ with Geike
* with Mathilda Mann