Founding Lush guitarist Emma Anderson has announced her debut solo album, Pearlies. The project arrives October 20th via Sonic Cathedral, while lead single “Bend the Round” is out now.
Anderson began writing what would become Pearlies back around 2016, when Lush was briefly reunited. In fact, the songs were intended for the shoegaze pioneers. “I thought we were in it for the long term, so some of these songs — or even just parts of them — were actually going to be for Lush,” Anderson explained in a statement. “That didn’t happen, so I had these songs and bits of music that I didn’t know what to do with.”
It took a lot of convincing for the songwriter to make a solo record, and especially to sing lead vocals. After Anderson’s frequent collaborator, Cocteau Twins’ Robin Guthrie, declined to contribute unless she agreed to make the jump, however, Pearlies began in earnest. “I am not someone that feels comfortable in the spotlight, so for me to take centre stage, metaphorically speaking, was quite a big leap,” the artist said.
Rather than forming another traditional four-piece rock band, Anderson enlisted electronic producer James Chapman to contribute keyboards, synthesizers, and programming (though Suede’s Richard Oakes did lend a hand on guitar). The result is a more textured, modern work, though “Bend the Round” still has the ethereal quality of a Lush classic. At this point, however, that just seems like an Anderson constant. Check it out below.
01. I Was Miles Away
02. Bend the Round
03. Inter Light
04. Taste the Air
06. The Presence
07. Willow and Mallow
08. Tonight Is Mine
09. For a Moment