Published Jun 19, 2012Alt-country figure Catherine Irwin has been extremely quiet the last several years. Her Chicago-based outfit Freakwater haven't released an album since 2005's Thinking of You, and she hasn't issued a solo record since 2002's Cut Yourself a Switch. The songwriter's solo career is about to get resurrected, however, as Irwin will deliver her sophomore set Little Heater this fall.
Thrill Jockey has confirmed that the label will issue the LP on September 18. The 13-track outing was recorded by Tara Jane O'Neil (Rodan, Ida) in Woodstock, NY, and it apparently "combines raw and unadorned vocals with lush countrypolitan-style productions."
The sessions are said to contain string sections, pedal steel guitar work from Marc Orleans, and multi-layered vocal harmonies. Jumping in on the mic along with Iriwn are Bonnie "Prince" Billy (aka Will Oldham) and members of Ida.
Irwin's lyrics this time around apparently hone in on the "dark corners of the human condition," following themes of "loss, despair, self-destruction and delusion." Song titles like "To Break Your Heart" and "Flowers of Darkness" certainly cast a sombre pallor on the album, but there's something slightly uplifting and playful about a song called "Hoopskirt," right?
You can check the full tracklisting down below and the cover art above.
2. Dusty Groove
4. Sinner Saves a Saint
5. We Must Also Love the Thieves
6. To Break Your Heart
7. Piss to Gin
9. Flowers of Darkness
10. Save Our Ship
11. Pale Horse/Pale Rider
12. The Whole of the Law
13. The Banks of the Ohio