London-based Irish-born songstress Linda Em has announced her new ‘London Irish’ EP, to be released this fall via Talking Elephant Records. Ahead of that, ‘Wild Fire’ is the first single from this release – a sultry song that is as much of an earworm as it is seductive.
This EP is the first step in a different direction for Linda, towards a more atmospheric and spacious sound and vocal performance. It is both poetic and storytelling while still being brutally honest and personal. Her pure and raw vocals beautifully convey a nostalgic lyrical narrative, her warm endearing vocals drawing the listener into her musical story telling.
The ‘London Irish’ EP was recorded, produced and mastered at Orphan Recording, Dublin by Gavin Glass (Paul Brady, John Grant, Lisa Hannigan, Mundy, who is also music director for John Carney's film ‘Sing Street’). It was mixed by Scott Halliday (John Grant, Lisa Hannigan and previously guitar tech for Prince and James Vincent Mcmorrow).
‘Wild Fire’ is about the power struggle in a relationship built on control and passion, where there can be no victor. Written by Linda Em and Eamon Gilmore, here Em shares vocal duties with Gavin Glass.
“This is definitely more of love story or indeed a power battle. If you watch Game of Thrones, for instance, you'll see that Wild Fire was one of their deadly weapons of choice. The fear of wild fire is indeed a fantastic metaphor for human passion and love and energy that could not be controlled or tamed," says Linda Em. "The song is also an expression of a woman's desire for freedom and the sadness that comes when two lovers simply aren't right for each other. Even if they have this intense love, we realise as we get older, that love alone just isn’t enough."
Originally hailing from Waterford, Ireland, Linda’s family immigrated to London’s East End in the 1980s. A natural singer, songwriter and storyteller, her lyrical narrative is comparable to that of authors, poets and playwrights with a strong visual essence, stimulating the listener’s own imagination. Her music explores a wide array of themes from forgotten fateful stories and uncelebrated heroines of the past to her own personal and family experiences.
Linda first started singing blues and rock ’n’ roll in pubs and clubs in her early twenties before meeting Chris Wyatt, with whom she wrote and recorded her first album ‘Shadow Lands’ in 2015. Her sound has grown to adopt strong elements of Americana and folk noir with an ominous and atmospheric Celtic undercurrent to it and splashes of gospel and soul.
"As a lyricist I’m telling a story and, through working with producer Gavin Glass, I think the musical side reflects and illustrates that. Gavin has managed to give the songs and sound a strong cohesiveness even though the songs are all written with different people," says Linda Em.
Linda draws an ethereal energy flow from her inspirations, citing numerous artists as influences, including Leonard Cohen, Edith Piaf, Nina Simone, Portishead, Hank Williams, Ennio Morricone and the poetry of Ted Hughes.
Linda Em produces music in an extraordinary mix of influences and genres, blending folk (revisited from a current London / Irish cultural perspective), a bit of rock, Celtic melody and American blues. Her music is timeless, filtering new compositions through the prism of her musical heritage to produce an overall modern day eclectic feel.
The 'London Irish' EP will be available through the regular online stores and streaming platforms as of September 21, 2018, and will also be available on CD from Talking Elephant Records.
Linda Em will be playing an EP launch show in London on September 26 at Water Rats (19:30 - 22:30, 328 Grays Inn Road, Kings Cross) with support by Crayon Angels and JMK James.
- Folk & Singer-Songwriter