- Our Two Skins album released June 19
- New song ‘Aeroplane Bathroom’ out today with video shot in Bangkok
- Album taps into feelings of isolation and identity. Recorded with Bon Iver’s production team at Sophie’s family farm in Canowindra
- Touring the US with Of Monsters And Men late 2020
“Gordi is her own formidable talent” – NPR Music
Late last month, Sydney-via-Canowindra musician Gordi – also known as Sophie Payten – unveiled her poignant new single, Sandwiches. Liberation Records is proud to share the news of an album release for Gordi, along with another taste of the record in Aeroplane Bathroom. The song (also the album opener) is accompanied by Gordi’s most stunning video released to date, which conveys the isolation and crippling anxiety that the album explores.
VIDEO: Aeroplane Bathroom by Gordi
‘Our Two Skins’ will be released on June 19 via Liberation Records (Jagjaguwar internationally).
The writing of the album began after a nervous breakdown while pacing around an Etihad flight from Australia to Europe in late 2017. Having finally completed her medical exams after years of painstaking study, and against the backdrop of Australia’s marriage equality vote, Sophie was grappling with a new truth in her identity. That internal struggle, which was compounded by her Catholic upbringing, led to an isolated internal state. It was a turbulent, unsettled and isolating period. ‘Our Two Skins’ chronicles this intense chapter of Gordi’s life, as she renegotiated who she was and how she fit into the world.
This stark sense of isolation and upheaval permeates the album and comes to the fore on Aeroplane Bathroom, which was penned in 20 anxious minutes whilst pacing around the stern of an Etihad flight from Australia to Europe.
“I wrote ‘Aeroplane Bathroom’ sitting in a window seat on a long haul flight. The people next to me were asleep and I was alone with my thoughts. I had that sensation of being trapped so I climbed over the other passengers and tried to escape to the bathroom.”“The song is about feeling isolated. It comes at a very strange time now given we’re all locking ourselves in our homes, ‘socially isolating’ from our normal functional lives. There is no more dehumanising experience than to be cut off from everything you know. It can plunge you into total despair.”
Later, upon arriving home, Gordi recorded a single vocal to an out-of-tune piano. At her parents’ farm in Canowindra, with the help of Bon Iver production duo Chris Messina and Zach Hanson, these original parts were teased out to add soundscape. If you listen closely to the track, you can hear elements from the farm shining through – gates and chains, creaking doors, and a revving Subaru Impreza. This stripped back approach to the recording process was applied to the album in its entirety with all ten tracks laid down at the farm, using minimal equipment. Eager to bottle the isolation and emptiness she felt during that period of rediscovery, the remoteness of Canowindra proved the right location.
Messina and Hanson flew from Wisconsin to Canowindra with several cases of gear and set up a temporary studio in an old cottage on the farm, dialing into the isolation of the songs’ subject matter; a musical quarantine. There was no phone reception, no wi-fi, and a tin outhouse located in a nearby shearing shed.
“A big theme of the record is: there’s nothing to hide behind. We didn’t have all the bells and whistles. You’re just standing there, with your hands in your pockets going: this is me. This is it. This is all I have.”
Aeroplane Bathroom arrives complete with a cinematic video from Kasimir Burgess, appropriately filmed across two aeroplane graveyards outside Bangkok. “To get in we had to negotiate with the squatters that live there,” says Gordi. “It was one-million-percent humidity and there were wild dogs and a small crocodile so any fear in my eyes is genuine.”
It follows the release of the album’s first official single Sandwiches, which was swiftly added to triple j and has seen strong support from both Apple Music and Spotify. Earlier this year, Gordi also released The Cost, (a standalone track in support of the Australian Bushfire Relief and regional drought efforts), and INDIFFERENT (a haunting collaboration with Willaris. K).
Gordi’s previous full-length offering, 2017’s J Award-nominated Reservoir, established her place as an in-demand collaborator, seeing her release music with Troye Sivan, and touring with Sam Smith, Julien Baker and Fleet Foxes. In addition to sold-out local tours, Gordi has performed at Eaux Claires, Big Red Machine, and PEOPLE Festival amongst others, working with a dream list of like-minded artists, including Feist, Damien Rice, Alex Somers and Justin Vernon.
Gordi is due to tour the US with Of Monsters And Men later this year, keep an eye on www.gordimusic.com for the full run of dates. Australian and further international tour dates will be announced as soon as is appropriate, in light of current COVID-19 advice.
‘Our Two Skins’ will be released on June 19 via Liberation Records for Australia/ New Zealand and Jagjaguwar for the rest of the world.
Single out now through Liberation Records
Available to buy/stream here
‘Our Two Skins’
Album out 19 June 2020 through Liberation Records
Available to pre-order here
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Thanks to Mushroom Group