Cocoon

by Emma Gatrill

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  • Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    The first fifty vinyl preorders each come with three unique film photographs taken by Emma over the last six months of touring.

    Includes unlimited streaming of Cocoon via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
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1.
04:07
2.
04:29
3.
04:35
4.
04:50
5.
05:35
6.
03:14
7.
03:34
8.
05:21
9.
03:29
10.
07:15

about

Emma Gatrill is a multi-instrumentalist based in Brighton, UK. Her debut, 2012’s Chapter I, was a poignant collection of songs based around her then-latest acquisition – the harp. Subtly accompanied by various members of Brighton’s Willkommen Collective, her intricate harp playing coupled with a unique vocal fragility drew comparisons to Björk and Joni Mitchell as well as her friends and co-conspirators Rachael Dadd and Rozi Plain.

By the time the album came out, she’d already played clarinet in Laura Marling’s band on Glastonbury’s Pyramid stage, made up part of Broken Social Scene’s horn section on a run of UK dates and toured all over Europe as part of Sons Of Noel And Adrian. Since then she’s been touring and collaborating with kindred spirit Kristin McClement and as a member of Matthew & The Atlas.

In amongst it all, Gatrill somehow found time to develop her own live show beyond the simplicity of Chapter I; augmenting her harp and vocal with ambient analogue synths and drum machines using foot controllers, as well as introducing accompanying guitar atmospherics from label-mate Marcus Hamblett.

Five years and hundreds of live shows with dozens of different bands later, her larger-scale live ambitions fed back into the writing and recording process for Gatrill’s forthcoming second album, Cocoon.

The album showcases a huge leap forward in scope and imagination. The harp, tender vocal and unique take on classic songwriting are still at the core of Gatrill’s sound, but the arrangements draw from a much wider and often darker sonic palette – from orchestral strings to monosynths, drum machines to tap shoes and Casio keyboards to vibraphones.

Gatrill’s circle of influences has widened too – on Cocoon Emma draws from the joyful experimentation of Juana Molina and the intelligent pop and texturally rich arrangements of Julia Holter and My Brightest Diamond.

While the songs are more honed and focused, the lyrical content is broader. Philomela explores Greek mythology to the backdrop of tumultuous strings and thunderous drums and Robin tackles climate change set to chamber pop orchestration; while universal concerns of loss, isolation, hope and togetherness tie the album together.

The album was mixed by Dan Cox whose work for the likes of Laura Marling, Thurston Moore and Florence and the Machine lead to him being named Breakthrough Engineer Of The Year at the Music Producer’s Guild awards.

credits

released March 17, 2017

Emma Gatrill - harp, vocals, clarinet, bass clarinet, synthesizers, vibraphone, percussion, omnichord, guitar on track 7, bass on track 1
Marcus Hamblett - guitars, bass, flugelhorn, tenor horn, cornet, synthesizers, percussion
Hannah Miller - cello, backing vocals on track 8
Kate Young - violin on tracks 2, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 and 10
Martha Rose - violin on tracks 7 and 8
Thomas Heather - drums on track 8
Catherine Cardin - backing vocals on tracks 1, 6 and 10
Ruth Skipper - backing vocals on tracks 1, 2 and 6
Patrick Lawrence - backing vocals on track 2

Recorded by Marcus Hamblett
Additional recording by Emma Gatrill
Mixed by Dan Cox at Urchin Studios, London
CD mastered by Denis Blackham at Skye Mastering
Vinyl mastered by Noel Summerville
Photography by Sequoia Zigg
Design by Ryuto Miyake

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Track Name: Skin
I’m cold and I’m tired my roots are planted thin
Find me my darling, take me to him
I’ll paw and I’ll claw and I’ll scratch at the door
Until you let me in.

My boat I have anchored, perched on swollen seas,
My darling I’ve found him I will stay with thee
If ever I sway into utter dismay
You lift me up

For I long for your arms wrapped around me
I long for your touch skin on my skin
Skin on my, skin on my skin

I’ll knit you a sweater to keep you warm in winter nights
That, tell of our stories, about our lives
The threads I will weave with love right through the sleeves
And I will let you in

The roads you do travel take you far and wide,
With your sweater wrapped round you in your pocket I do hide
If ever you stray too far from your way
I will lift you up

For I long for your arms wrapped around me
I long for your touch skin on my skin
Skin on my, skin on my skin.
Track Name: Robin
ROBIN

You migrate north to find your mate
But for some the sound of love has changed
The tall city buildings echo your song
Confuse your ears as to whether a response was sung

Too long spent in such a loud environment

Little robin why do you sing at night?
Have you been tricked by the city streetlights?
Or have you chosen so you don’t have to fight
For to sing at night you put up less of a fight

Too long spent in such a loud environment
Has altered the pitch of your song

Will your country cousin recognize your call?
Will your children sing an entirely new song?
Oh Nature she tries to strike a balance
But we don’t help to keep your love and you together

Too long spent in such a loud environment
Has altered the pitch of your song
Your range has narrowed
Your pitch it has risen.
Track Name: Wild Waters
How I wait, how I wonder what the earth will bring
For tonight in the moonlight I long for to see

Break, break me from the branch that I cling to
For the tree is rotten, it’s rotten to its core
My tears slowly salten the floor

How I stayed, how I lingered till the dawn shared the sky
How you treat me with indifference is a pleasure I despise

Take, take me to the wild waters
Where she’ll rage and she’ll roar, she’ll drag me under once more
As I give to the sea what is rightfully thee.
Track Name: Odd Ones Out
If I do not write, I cannot think
My head and heart separated by ink
And ink is poison to my blood
It slows my pulse to a heavy thud

I cannot speak if I cannot think
So much outside so little within
I’m fragile as a glass
Teetering the expanse below vast

Brandished by my own labels
Categorised by my own system of worth
Like the vases on the table
We are the odd ones out

Don’t judge a book by its cover
Its façade is simple, simple to see
But by twenty pages in
You’ll find the story is not what it first seemed.

Brandished by my own labels
Categorised by my own system of worth
Like the vases on the table
We are the odd ones out
Track Name: Space
You need some space
Trust me its no disgrace
Let the bell toll, let time flow
For it will show that all you need is space

It feels long
Just try to be strong
Let the bell toll, let time flow
For it will show that all is well
All is good

Let the winds blow
Let the rains fall
Let the sunshine in
Let yourself feel it all

Feel it all
Breathe it all
For dawn will break
A new day lies in wait

All is good
All is well

Let the winds blow
Let the rains fall
Let the sunshine in
Let yourself feel it all
Track Name: Cocoon
Tie me wind me, up into a ball
My threads are dangling, they trip me make me fall
Sometimes I unravel
Take my hand and I’ll follow

Shake me, cake me, do with me what you will
For now I’m safely tucked up into a ball
I’m cocooned by your silk
I’m cocooned in the warmth of your silk

For I do believe in the beauty that we seek

Patiently I’ll wait out the winter storms
Till the skies are brighter, the weather nice and warm
Then I’ll rise up, break from the threads that I have adorned
For the morning brings new stories that I haven’t yet explored
Sometimes I unravel
Take my hand and I’ll follow

For I do believe in the beauty that we seek
Track Name: You
How I wanted, how I wanted to say
How I feel, how I feel when I’m afraid.
But the air doesn’t fill my lungs and I cannot speak
All I have goes right to my eyes I can’t help but weep.

You are the best thing that happened to me
You are the one that I long to see
YOU…
Track Name: Philomela
He was a husband, a lover, a King no one knew what lay within him
He went out to me his wife’s sister an escort for her safety
Through the days that they spent in the carriage he bent
For he twisted and writhed for her body and mind

Arriving in Thrace he was utterly blind but to desire
Into the wood they did drive till trees surrounded all sides all was silent
Then they ground to a halt, he grabbed her arm dragged her out
And he forced her inside has his way whilst she cried

Philomela was her name
Though she screamed in pain,
Though she screamed in vain.

Her innocence defiled no shame left she shouted at the heavens
That she would tell all the people she saw that he was the devil
His power so mighty and strong, no one would know he’d done wrong
So he cut out her tongue, left her helpless and dumb.

Philomela was her name
Though she couldn’t say
Though she couldn’t say

Her story she wove of threads and sent to her sister
Who with rage sought revenge on her king for he was but a pillager
So she killed their own son, red rage let this be done
And he willingly ate his own son from his plate

The king his eyes were ablaze his rage turned into fury
When he discovered that his own son now lay in his tummy
Oh the sisters they fled for he wanted them dead
And the king he pursued till the God’s changed their end

And they flew up high
Flew far from what lay behind
Two birds in the sky
A swallow, a nightingale
And she’ll sing her name
She’ll sing it again
Philomela
A nightingale.
Track Name: Eliza Harora
Thou shalt not grow old as we are left to grow old
Age shall not weary you nor the years condemn
At the going down of the sun
And in the mornings we shall remember them

Eliza Harora until the day dawns and the shadows fled
Sweet is the fragrance of remembrance

Rock of ages, cleft for me
Let me hide myself in thee

Loved in life and treasured in death
A beautiful memory is all that we have left
Oh for a touch of that vanished hand
And a sound of that voice which is silenced now

Eliza Harora until the day dawns and the shadow fled
Sweet is the fragrance of remembrance

Rock of ages, cleft for me
Let me hide my self in thee
Track Name: Cast Out
Cast out into the murky waters
Coldness lingers upon my breath
It forms the mists that keep me far from rest

Drawn out, drawn out days submerge
Into a haze, the ring of the bell lies dormant
Afraid to sing its song

I am waiting for the answers
I am waiting for them
A flicker of hope lifts me off the ground
Spins through my soul, turns my feet around
I care not for this or the distance to all that it brings

Can’t say, how I feel today
For I am holding in all of winter’s snows
And it’s not time for them to fall

Now and then I’ll fall
But broken bones will mend, scars are stories shared
I will not give in till the end

I’m still waiting for the answers
I’m still waiting for them
A flicker of hope lifts me off the ground
Spins through my soul, turns my feet around
I care not for this or the distance to all that it brings
But it’s the way that I feel.