Though there was a bit of gap since we were last able to share some new music by Johnny Flynn, his fourth album Sillion is finally released. It's something that has grown in-between his commitments to acting, composing and a young family; an album about the sacredness of man's endeavour to connect with the earth. As a result it's deeply personal, even from the first song Raising The Dead, the topic of his lyrics focus on his newborn daughter.
"My Dad died when I was 18, and that was quite a galvanising experience, and there’s often an element of that in anything I’m writing; every big loss that you suffer in life, I think everything comes through the conduit of that. I had a really strong sense of my daughter having elements of my Dad when she came along, and it made me kind of laugh - that cyclical sense, of thinking of my daughter as my Dad."
There are lots of influences to find on the album, friendship, politics or poetry... like the folk song Ten Thousand Miles which forms the basis of Heart Sunk Hank.
"There’s a version of [Ten Thousand Miles] by Nic Jones that I really love, his version is really pure and beautiful and trembling with authenticity. But I played it to my wife and she hated it. And it made me laugh: how can it be that this person that I love hates this song? I’ve been away from home a lot, I’m always off, and I carry that sense of my love across the seas, romanticising it, and she’s like 'shut up, come home.'"
Heart Sunk Hank also features a Voice-o-Graph of which there are only two working in the world, and it's that recording that adds "a sense of time travel in the song, panning from the Voice-o-Graph to the studio recording."
The first four songs on the album have been out for a little while, with two of those (Wandering Aengus and Raising The Dead), coming with music videos. Both are part of a wider collaboration between Johnny, the director Simon Ryninks and photographer Hanna-Katrina Jędrosz - who also took the photos for the album's artwork. Take a look via the Johnny Flynn Vevo channel alongside some classics, e.g. Kentucky Pill or Tickle Me Pink.
Naturally, Johnny will be touring with The Sussex Wit, and performing songs from the album. Tickets for the first set of shows in the UK have now all but sold-out, however a second show in London has just been announced for October at the Roundhouse.
28 March - O2 Academy 2 in Birmingham (Tickets)
29 March - Trinity Centre in Bristol *SOLD OUT*
31 March - St John-at-Hackney Church in London *SOLD OUT*
21 April - (le) poisson rouge in New York, NY *SOLD OUT*
17-20 August - Green Man Festival in Brecon Beacons (Tickets)
17 October - Roundhouse in London (Tickets)