THOM SOUTHERN is pleased to confirm ‘So Long My Friend’; a brand new solo album slated for release on 8th September 2023 (via Mighty Good Leader).
A rapid follow-up to his 2022 NI Music Prize-nominated debut ‘Plaza’, it’s also a record that finds the prolific Belfast songwriter returning to his lo-fi roots. Turning a decisive corner on the shoegazey sheen of his previous work, Southern teases this future release today with the lead single “Let Someone Else In”.
LISTEN TO “LET SOMEONE ELSE IN” HERE
With its hooky vocal refrain of “you make me complete” intended as a wry reference to the “you complete me” phrase that made 90s rom-com Jerry Maguire an endearing pop-hit, “Let Someone Else In” sees Southern turning-in a future cult classic of his own.
Showcasing a newfound willingness to be sonically exposed, Thom’s open-hearted writing is placed centre-stage on a single that pares-back the production to illuminate a tender lyrical tale. Touching on what it means to find that someone who feels like your other half, and just what it can mean to lose them, Thom explains:
“I just thought that idea as a lyric was so nice. The idea of meeting someone who completes you is great. It’s a heartache song too about the emotional journey of coming out of a long term relationship and the struggle of learning how to move on but I wanted it to be playful, so it has this uplifting positive feeling at the end where it’s all going to be fine. That’s kind of running through all my songs at the moment – kind of like, ‘That was s**t, but it’s going to be ok. Do yourself a favour and let someone else in.’”
Turning the contrast up on his more melancholic sense of harmony, “Let Someone Else In” is an outright peak with all the heart-stung brilliance of Built To Spill, (Sandy) Alex G, Kurt Vile or Pixies at their most understated. Written with his long-time friend Ben Simon during a spell in which Thom had relocated to England, the pair began writing together, with Simon’s adept skills with an acoustic guitar proving to be the lightbulb moment he had been seeking to inspire the direction of his new album. As Thom remembers of the experience:
“I became so inspired by acoustic music again. I hadn’t felt like that in a while as I’d spent a few years leading up to it totally obsessed with electric guitar and experimenting with pedals. This track really paved the way for everything else I’ll be releasing this year that focuses more round my vocals and an acoustic guitar. It’s funny because it’s very similar to the music I used to make as a teenager, it feels like I’ve done a full creative circle at the moment, it’s a real buzz.”
Cutting lo-fi diamonds from the rawest materials of heart, soul, and sound available to him, writing “Let Someone Else In” ultimately paved the way for his second solo LP: ‘So Long My Friend’ this Autumn. 8 tracks of wistful, lo-fi pop that see him artfully connect the dots between the Greenwich Village-style storytelling of Simon & Garfunkel with the nonchalant day-dreamings of Kurt Vile, by way of Beck’s stately ‘Sea Change’/‘Morning Phase’ era efforts; ‘So Long My Friend’, the highly anticipated new album by Thom Southern will arrive on 8th September 2023.
Thom Southern is an alternative singer-songwriter currently based in Ireland. After a decade of helming various musical projects such as Southern and MMODE, Thom began releasing material under his solo moniker in 2021, where his observant and artful lo-fi creations have begun to find an admiring audience.
Receiving airplay from BBC Radio 1, Radio X, Amazing Radio, and RTE Radio 1, Southern has also seen his music reach new fans across key Spotify playlists including New Music Friday, ‘LoFi Indie’ and ‘Alternative Ireland’.
Drawing comparisons to alternative-folk icons like Duster to Dylan, Sparklehorse to Elliott Smith; his music has been praised by established tastemakers including Under The Radar, When The Horn Blows, HotPress and Clash, with the latter championing Southern as “a musician with a gilded touch”. In 2022, he released his NI Music Prize-nominated debut solo album, ‘Plaza’, and has charted nearly a million streams to his name.
Actively collaborating with fellow musicians as both an artist and producer, Thom recently released the co-write “Daydream in Tokyo” with Lucy Gaffney (via the Nettwerk label), which received rave reviews and substantial Spotify support. Thom is also confirmed to be producing her upcoming album. His recent one-off solo single “Love Hz”, written with Stevie Scullion (AKA Malojian), was also praised by Hot Press as “something of an unadorned and unassuming beauty.”
Having supported fellow alternative spirits like Michael Head and Just Mustard last year, Thom Southern recently played his first live show of the year in Bangor. Now sizing up a select number of festival shows this Summer (details below), standby for further new music and shows to come later in 2023.
THOM SOUTHERN – 2023 LIVE DATES
Stendhal Festival – 06 Jul 23
THOM SOUTHERN – NEW ALBUM: “SO LONG MY FRIEND”
OUT 8 SEPTEMBER, VIA MIGHTY GOOD LEADER
LISTEN TO LEAD SINGLE “LET SOMEONE ELSE IN” NOW HERE
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