ferna is back with a new offering entitled “understudy.” The album is immersive, and will be sure to take the listener on a musical journey with its perfect blend of infectious and tranquil. Tracks such as “Open Up” featuring heartwarming synths, playful drums and irresistible vocals. Whereas the likes of “River” are stripped back offerings that feature powerful but ethereal vocal and guitar partnerships. Singles “Wasting” and “Go Quietly” are sure to make an impact with their powerful lyricism. “understudy” is the perfect album for today’s musical era. ferna doesn’t obey any genre barriers, and mixes and merges together a vast array of musical influences and genres.
Speaking about the album, ferna reveals: “understudy is all about what’s going on beneath the surface. Who is not getting to speak? What nuances are we not picking up on? And what happens then, when we become spectators, rather than players, in our own lives?
The songs are inspired by the likes of the life story of Coretta Scott King (author, leader and wife of MLK) [walk on & bleed], as well as Milkman [wasting] which offers an introverted teenager’s perspective on Belfast’s troubles. But the album returns regularly and often to my own struggles to find my voice in dying friendships [morning after, go quietly, lights out] and strange places[new city, river].
Sonically, Stu and I were already obsessed with every tiny detail, but this became hyper important due to the theme running through the album. We needed to pay attention to everything that was going on to do it justice ! I can honestly say that every single note, effect and instrument has been handpicked and agonized over at some point. Am really happy with the meld of electronic and organic sounds, clean and imperfect notes, delicate and powerful performances that we captured together, mostly just the two of us in his little home studio.”
ferna is the moniker of Hannah McPhillimy. Hailing from the North Coast of Ireland, McPhillimy’s music has been written to cut through the noise. Her unique and distinctive sound merges organic and electronic, managing to conjure up multiple different emotions for the listener. Hannah already achieved and received so many fantastic accolades. She’s already performed alongside the likes of Foy Vance, SOAK and The Gloaming, as well as at SXSW and RTE’s Other Voices. After her first official release, she took home the NI Music Prize for Single of the Year 2022 in November, while singles “Morning After” and “New City” caught the attention of Tom Robinson at 6 Music. With fantastic recognition already, we can see her going to the very top.
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