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Paraorchestra Collaborate With Brett Anderson On New LP
Christian Eede , February 29th, 2024 16:15

'Death Songbook', which features original songs and covers of tracks about love and loss, also features contributions from Nadine Shah, Gwenno and others

Paraorchestra have teamed up with Suede's Brett Anderson for a new collaborative album, Death Songbook.

The 12-track record is comprised of original compositions and covers of songs about love, loss and transcendence, by the likes of Echo & The Bunnymen, Depeche Mode, Japan, Mercury Rev and Suede. The project came about after Paraorchestra's founder, Charles Hazlewood, put the idea of an album of such covers to Anderson during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Suede frontman took to the idea and agreed to help curate and sing across the project. You can watch a performance rehearsal-based video for the cover of Echo & The Bunnymen's 'The Killing Moon' above.

Speaking about Death Songbook and the choice of covers featured, Hazlewood said in a statement: "The only rule is that all the songs have to have a relationship to death or the death of love. So much of the greatest art, certainly from my point of view, is intrinsically melancholic. Music which is about death, or the death of love, about loss, about anxiety, there's a transcendence in that music. My go to, whether I'm feeling happy or sad or somewhere in between, will be melancholy music because that's where the catharsis is, that's where art is most resonant."

Anderson added: "The Death Songbook was an idea Charles came up with during the bleak days of lockdown. As soon as he suggested it, I was sold. I loved the idea of curating a suite of songs about loss and sadness and regret. I've always found happy songs depressing; it's been the murkier themes that have somehow sounded more joyous to me. Songs about doubt and fear and grief confront feelings we all struggle with, so to know that we are not alone in that fight can be quietly life-affirming."

Nadine Shah, Gwenno, Seb Rochford of Sons Of Kemet, and Adrian Utley of Portishead also appear across the record. Shah described working on the project as "a moment of melancholic magic with a bunch of fellow goths".

World Circuit / BMG will release Death Songbook on April 19, 2024.