Twenty-five years after her chart-topping breakout album, Oyster, Heather Nova is back with Pearl an album that is both an acknowledgement of an anniversary as well as a brilliantly crafted collection of songs. Pearl is a raw, beautiful and passionate work of rock, that no one will deny shows she is at her peak as a singer, songwriter, and artist.
“I didn’t plan to release an album on the 25th anniversary of Oyster. It just worked out that way. When I was ready to record a new album, I thought it would be cool to have Youth produce one or two of the songs, to revisit the vibe and sound we created back then.”
Youth, as well as being the founding bass player for Killing Joke is also a noted producer who not only worked on Oyster, but also albums and songs from The Verve, The Cult, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Dido, Pink Floyd, Paul McCartney and many others.
“I sent him my demos so that he could choose one or two. The message I got back was ‘Really beautiful …. I’d love to do them all …can see the connection to Oyster, but the songs are better! Much stronger ..deeper insights ….still vulnerable but from a position of strength, I’m in!’.
“We discussed going back to a similar sound, while still keeping the record contemporary too. I think that, just naturally, the combination of each of our innate sensibilities once again came together to create that unique sound we got on Oyster. I couldn’t be happier with the outcome. It rocks. It’s raw. It feels so me.”
There are many love songs on the record, full of passion and a renewed lust for life, in particular the rocking “All The Rivers” and the exquisite, cello-infused “After All This Time” stand out. There are a couple of songs about divorce; The killer lead track “The Wounds We Bled” is more philosophical than bitter; it’s raw without being angsty. “Some Things Just Come Undone”, with its punchy rock guitars, about having to tell her son that his parents are separating, is particularly heartbreaking, and will speak to anyone who has been in that excruciating position.
Then there is “Over The Fields”, a true full circle from the song “Island” on Oyster. “Last year the man I wrote “Island” about (who had abused me) was dying. When I heard that, I reached out to him for the first time in almost 30 years, to say that I forgave him. He wrote me an incredible letter of regret and apology for all the pain and suffering he had caused me. I felt there was a kind of closure. After he died, I wrote “Over The Fields”; It’s a song of forgiveness and compassion for a troubled soul that never managed to find its way clear in this life; A hope for a second chance the next time round.”
Pearl, an album of 11 outstanding songs, recorded in the mountains of Spain with veteran producer and Killing Joke bassist, Youth, will be released on June 28th, 2019