THE NEW album from Lost Horizons, the project of Cocteau Twins’ Simon Raymonde and Richie Thomas, formerly of 4AD label mates Dif Juz, is a hugely ambitious affair.
Not only does every track feature a guest vocalist – of the calibre of John Grant, Dana from Porridge Radio, both Jack and Lily from Penelope Isles, and Nubiya Brandon of The Hempolics – it’s also being released in two halves, with the first eight tracks out now; the remainder to follow digitally, and the whole on vinyl, in a month.
They’ve just released a delicious new single, “Marie”, on which the lead is taken by spectral folk singer without parallel, Boston’s Marissa Nadler. We’e got the video for you here, and my what a song; Marissa created the footage which was then edited and directed by Penelope Isles’ Jack. Bella Union is a very collaborative label.
Simon says of the song that they didn’t think ” … there was ever a second I wasn’t going to find a song for Marissa to sing on the new LP. So much cool stuff came out of our last collaborations, on [previous album] Ojalá; indeed I think we ended up recording four songs from the original idea of doing one!
“Marissa is a really great and generous collaborator as she really throws herself in deep and commits to it fully. That is a rare and beautiful gift and Richie and I appreciate it enormously.
“It was a beast of a track to mix, I’ll be honest, and that had nothing to do with Marissa’s vocals; in fact they were a breeze to mix. But the initial music that Richie and I improvised in our basement studio in Brighton was a bit messy and we didn’t use a click or anything to keep tempo, so fixing anything later was a lost cause, but it is such a cool piece that I loved creating (I think I put four, maybe five, bass parts on with my old trusty Fender VI string bass guitar!) that even when it’s kinda falling apart during that instrumental section near the end, I still love it.
“It probably sounds like it took half an hour to mix but the truth is it took weeks of starting it, scrapping it, starting over, scrapping it, etc. And yes, I fully intend to ask Marissa to contribute to our next one too.”
Marissa adds: “It was a dream to collaborate with Simon and Ritchie for Lost Horizons again. ‘Marie’ is an aquatic reverie about this title character entering different dimensions.
“Maybe we’re all feeling a little submerged, watching the time. This stream of consciousness song came from listening to the track that Simon sent, and birthed this hypnagogic hallucination of a story.”
Beauty is the absolute name of the game here; if anyone can lift a tune into spectral grace, it’s Marissa. Simon’s bass has harmony and bite; the vocals glide and yearn in a sweet sorrow, a beautifully sweet sorrow.
Lost Horizons are also, god and virus willing, set to play a live date at London’s Scala on Tuesday, October 19th, for which tickets are now available.
Lost Horizons’ In Quiet Moments will be released in two instalments: the eight tracks comprising the first half are out now, with the second half and the full CD, trad black 2xLP and limited green and blue double vinyl following on February 26th; pre-orders are now being taken here.