London-based artist Grace Gillespie last featured on Bitter Sweet Symphonies back in April, when she released her stunning single ‘Human (Heart).’ Having cut her teeth touring as part of the live line up for Pixx, she stepped out as an artist in her own right in early 2018, and this summer enjoyed much success from the release of her debut EP, Pretending, on Kaleidoscope. Gaining plaudits from the likes of Clash, The Line Of Best Fit and Earmilk, the EP was additionally part-funded by PRS for Music Foundation (Women Make Music Fund). Clearly on a creative hot streak, she now returns with another new single, ‘Take Me To The Country,’ out on October 18th, again via Kaleidoscope.
Grace is a canny musical magpie, taking her inspiration from a multitude of genres including folk, psych and dream-pop. Key figures she has been compared to include Bon Iver and Laura Marling, but on this new release, the act that hangs heaviest over her sound is Portishead. With able backing and a slick production, the track starts with a chilled, trip-hop vibe, with Grace’s signature breathy vocals taking centre stage, guiding us through confidently.
Lyrically, the track’s title gives away its strongest message, that of escaping from the confines of the city, of connecting with nature, of finding calm and solitude – “Take me to the places that I cannot go / Show me where the truth blows,” she sings. It’s this insight and quality that gives the track, and her sound as a whole, its emotional grounding, so that wherever Grace takes her music sonically, the listener is constantly connected and engaged.
Her music always contains an effortless vibe, a creative lightness of touch that allows her to shift through various genres and blend sounds together into unexpected results. As she puts it herself, “It is essentially about giving up on music – a thought that I love to torment myself with, but also one which is impossible for me to do. I wrote it at a time when I was feeling the pressure to be a genre artist – which, again, I cannot be. The music I make will always genre hop and there shouldn’t be any problem with that.“
Grace has delighted our ears for many months now, and will surely go down as one of our favourite discoveries of recent years. For those looking for a place to jump in, this is a perfect starting point to uncover her work so far. Enjoy.
Grace Gillespie’s new track, ‘Take Me To The Country’ is out now – available to Stream/Purchase here.