Jesca Hoop’s brand-new single, ‘Red White and Black’ is taken from her forthcoming album, Stonechild. ‘Red White and Black’ is perhaps the most overtly political track on the album and has an accompanying video directed by old friend and collaborator, Elia Petridis.
Hoop says “‘Red White and Black’ is a poem, like a snapshot, set in post-civil war USA when slavery was "abolished" and swiftly rebranded by the prison system. It’s a personal acknowledgement and willingness to join the conversation for change. I write from personal perspective, about relationships mostly and I don’t find much music in politics, but as hate crimes increase, women’s rights are being rolled back, and the two nations I call home are building walls… well, the political has become deeply personal.”
Produced by John Parish (PJ Harvey, Aldous Harding, This Is The Kit), Stonechild was recorded in Hoop’s long time home, Manchester – a first, given previously she’s ventured back to her native California to record. Parish’s minimal and purist approach helped clarify Hoop in her ideas subtly yet effectively realigning her sound. The simplified arrangements draw focus to the fundamental sophistication of the songs.
The album title was settled after a trip to a Philadelphia’s Mütter Museum, where the Stonechild is a sad, compelling display of an unborn foetus carried by a woman for over 30 years. “They become a hard ball of bones, a rock. Phonetically, it's a beautiful sounding word - hard and soft – but also, I am taken by the idea of carrying something for a long time, perhaps in secret and then giving it up. I hope I have made an album of substance. There is meat on the bone”
While Hoop’s trademark finger-plucked guitar and ethereal textures remain, the songs and their presentation are ever more direct. “He – Parish - was a gentle collaborator until he killed one of my darlings” Hoop jests. “I’ve never been so brutally edited, and I wasn’t shy about expressing my discomfort at the sight of my work on the cutting room floor. He said, you will forgive me, and in some way I think I actually enjoyed that treatment…being stripped back to the bare basics…albeit painfully. ‘Stonechild’ ventures further into fresh territory with other voices joining the narrative, with Kate Stables (aka This is the Kit) Rozi Plain and Lucius singing the choruses and expanding the sensual depth of the sonic bloom.
Jesca is touring throughout 2019 as follows:
15-18 Aug – Brecon Beacons, Green Man Festival
01 Oct – Leeds, Brudenell Social Club
02 Oct – Bristol, Fiddlers
03 Oct – Manchester, HOME
04 Oct – London, Barbican
05 Oct – Cambridge, Storey's Field Centre
07 Oct – Gateshead, Sage
08 Oct – Liverpool, Leaf
09 Oct – Dublin, Soundhouse
11 Oct – Glasgow, Oran Mor
12 Oct – Edinburgh, Pleasance Theatre
13 Oct – Birmingham, Hare & Hounds