Ailbhe Reddy is today announcing her new album Endless Affair, the follow-up to her critically acclaimed Choice Music Prize-nominated (Best Album) debut album Personal History, and sharing the video for new single ‘Shitshow’. Endless Affair is due 17th March 2023.
Inspired by her romantic relationships and her fractured memories of many a fun night spent partying in her early 20s, the record is a tender exploration of emotional resilience that sees Reddy embrace the fact that - in her own words - she's "an absolute melt" when it comes to letting things go.
Written and recorded between January 2019 and October 2020, Reddy paired up with producer Tommy McLaughlin, who also worked on her debut album Personal History, to co-produce the new album. She relished the opportunity to have more input and create a truly rounded sound on Endless Affair, which maintains the raw spirit of her debut, but showcases a development in her intuitive talent for writing songs that continue to tap into both a personal and universal vein. Ultimately, Endless Affair is a poetic refection on personal growth, and a heartening reminder that we're all just "amateurs", trying to make sense of the bruises that mysteriously materialise on our bodies the morning after we've had too much of a good time.
Reddy taps into our need to be with others, to soak up the experience as much as possible, and to remind listeners that they're not missing out - even if they have to leave the party early.
“Tell me how did I get here? this endless pitiful affair.” It’s quite the lyric for Ailbhe to the album with, but one that smartly captures the central idea it addresses: the challenges we face in letting go and accepting finality.
With her new album Reddy poses these ideas across a spectrum covering the playful and up-beat to the sombre and heart-wrenching, plotting the album’s path in a way that mirrors life’s own evolution from the care-free to the serious. Its opening run of tracks - in particular new single ‘Shitshow’ and ‘Inhaling’- crave revelry and reflect on the wilder side of a youth increasingly viewed in the rear-view mirror. The likes of ‘A Mess’ soar atop a swell of fuzzed-up indie-rock and a chorus of joyous hollers, while the come-down hits on the quietly brutal ‘Last To Leave’. Once the final notes of the album’s arresting centrepiece ‘Shoulder Blades’ ring out, there is a palpable sense that the struggle to let go is shifting away from the backdrop of the party and into that of relationships and mortality.
This is where Endless Affair leaves the party and matures further into a story of more certain endings and letting go of life. When the album reaches its penultimate song, the stunningly vivid ‘Pray For Me’ – penned after the passing of Ailbhe’s grandmother – the strength of her song writing ability is laid out starkly. She instinctively straddles the line between emotional honesty and vulnerability, while delivering tongue in cheek moments, youthful stupidity, anger, defiance and heartache. Endless Affair exists as many of these things and leaves us with the final thought that we also do: you can be a party animal, a f*** up, a good partner, a bad partner, sensitive, unkind, a good daughter, and a bad one. All of this is rendered impressively in Endless Affair.
Ailbhe Reddy plays Whelans in Dublin on May 5th and 6th next year.
2. A Mess
6. Last To Leave
7. Shoulder Blades
8. I'm Losing
9. Good Time
10. You Own The Room
11. Pray For Me
Ailbhe Reddy – vocals, guitar, bass, piano
Tommy McLaughlin – guitar, bass, backing vocals
Ross Hannon – piano, backing vocals
James Byrne – drums
Rafino Murphy – trumpet
Sarah Corcoran – backing vocals
Artwork – Ailbhe Reddy, Ruth Medjber and Sarah Moloney