Song of the Week

SONG OF THE WEEK: Grace Gillespie – ‘Empty in the Capital’

As we start to ease ourselves out of the lockdown state we’ve become familiar with over the past four months, it’s likely that the strange, unsettling conditions we’ve lived under will inform more and more work across all media.

Music will be no exception, and we should hope that much of it will be as good as this reflective track from Grace Gillespie which was actually written just before lockdown but which muses on the sense of isolation and fear which has become the norm for too many people.

Empty in the Capital‘ has a beautiful simplicity, an instantly memorable hook, and lyrics that anyone who finds themselves rootless, drifting and, perhaps, bereft of purpose will find recognisable. You’re drawn right in from the start and like a gossamer spider’s web, the song never loses its grip.

As Gillespie explains: “Much of my time is spent trying to reassure myself through rationalizing and acceptance, heard in the song’s verses, coupled with outbursts of inward frustration that I express in the choruses.

“I think it’s a pattern we have all been through throughout lockdown. We are trying with all our hearts to make the most of this gift of time and be ‘grateful for the day’ but then realizing that we are sipping coffee and trying to create (or just get on with work) while ambulances are filing past.”

The title, ‘Empty in the Capital’ is, itself, such a wonderful phrase. There’s rarely a greater feeling of being alone than when in a crowd, and the scale of London only exacerbates that sense of loneliness.

Comparisons have already been made with Bon Iver, but particularly with this track I was put in mind of The Beta Band’s ‘Dry The Rain’ for its gorgeous sense of space and acoustically-driven rhythm.


‘Empty in the Capital’ is out now – available to Stream/Purchase here.

Find Grace Gillespie on Facebook and Twitter.

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