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Using cello, vocals, orchestral arrangements, choral ensembles, location samples, synths and piano Abi Wade explores human nature through real and abstracted personas on her debut album ‘Beautifully Astray’.
“Brilliant” – The 405
“Stark glitchy electronics juxtaposed with warming acoustic cello and violin, and semi pop vocals.” – God Is In The TV
“Abi Wade’s debut album Beautifully Astray is a stormy, self-contained world bursting with dramatic tensions, vivid textures and moments of tranquillity.” – Pond Blog
Abi wrote most of the tracks on the album on cello initially in various locations of her old hometown of Brighton, from the living room of her seafront apartment to the dark belly of Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar. “The cello is so versatile, and I love to explore those many characteristics using various techniques both traditional and unique, it’s such an emotive instrument and has a very human tone.”
From this starting point, Abi set out on a sonic exploration, getting field recordings in locations as diverse as a printworks, a tap dancing club and following a chance meeting there, a fishing boat: “After the tap dancing class I was explaining to the gentlemen who ran it how I was trying to get onto a boat to record some sounds and by pure coincidence it turned out he was a fisherman, I did not expect a tap dancing fisherman! It was truly an amazing experience to go out first thing on to the water and share a moment of time with such an interesting character.”
Following a move to Camden, London, the tracks were fleshed out with orchestral arrangements and were recorded in Jay Malhotra and Sam Duckworth’s Amazing Grace studio in Hoxton. These sessions included brass, wind and choral ensembles.
Abi then worked with ‘the patron saints of print’ Eley Kishimoto to create the visuals for the album matching the story of each print and pattern to the story of each song. Their patterns are featured on both the album and single artwork and has been a source of inspiration throughout the making of the album.
‘Beautifully Astray’ was recorded with support from Help Musician’s Emerging Excellence award, and the release with support from PRS for Music Foundation’s Women Make Music.
While developing as an artist, she has has toured the UK & Europe with Patrick Wolf, sold out her debut EP and released music on the label set up by Daniel Copeman of Esben & The Witch and has played shows with the likes of CocoRosie, Polica, Michael Kiwanuka, Other Lives, Deptford Goth and festivals such as End of The Road, The Great Escape and Wilderness.