Alana Henderson teams up with Joshua Burnside on haunting new track ‘On Board’

Alana Henderson has released a brand new collaboration with Joshua Burnside. Listen to ‘On Board’ on Spotify below.

‘On Board’, out today, is next single from Northern Irish artist Alana Henderson, and comes with the news that her highly anticipated upcoming EP ‘Museum’ will be released on October 18th. The track sees Alana team up with fellow Northern Irish artist and friend Joshua Burnside in a folk-tinged lament, building from low-fi guitar to a climax of atmospheric and expansive electric guitar, synths and vocals, like distant sirens calling to sailors.

“The song is about dropping your guard enough to let love in,” says Alana. “It’s a kind of battle of wills between someone who feels unsteady and afraid to risk hurting or being hurt in love and someone who is fit for that challenge and very persuasive!”

Alana has previously worked with Joshua Burnside on his song ‘Holllllogram’, taken from his Northern Irish Music Prize winning album ‘Ephrata’ in 2017, and it was his voice that Alana had “imagined on this from day one. We recorded it live with just the two vocals and acoustic guitar- no click track as I wanted the song to move and have a kind of sea-sickness/unsteadiness…then we embellished the live recording with synth, layered backing vocals and even some seagulls.”

Written in the middle of rural Ireland, on an enforced writing session in solitude by Annaghmakerug Lake, Alana Henderson pieced together the track through the numerous books she devoured whilst there. The track is peppered with literary references, from Coleridge’s ‘The Rime of The Ancient Mariner’, Hemingway’s ‘Old Man and the Sea’ and ‘Salt From My Attic’ by John A Shedd. “The line ‘ships were not built to be safe’ is inspired by a quote that I love from that book: A ship in harbour is safe, but that is not what ships are built for,” says Alana.      

Weaving pop, folk and electronic elements to craft a sound which is strikingly unique, the Museum EP is “based on relationships in their various stages of evolution. You have the falling in love, falling apart and looking back, and each song is a different part of that,” says Alana. 2019 sees Alana with her trademark cello now bolstered with shimmering electronics and ghostly slide guitar, influenced by the likes of Arthur Russell (the first person she ever heard using a cello as an accompanying instrument at age 16) and June Tabor, whilst receiving worthy comparisons to Joanna Newsom and Laura Marling.

Alana Henderson made her debut in 2014 with ‘Wax & Wane’, an organic, slow-burn success which has amassed 9 million streams to date on Spotify alone. Lyrics that flirt with levity but lean towards the confessional, innovative cello playing, delicate production and a sense of intimacy. A two-year stint moonlighting as Hozier’s touring cellist saw Alana travelling the World paying her musical dues but homecoming brought about a self-imposed hiatus and drawing-of-breath, punctuated by one haunting single release, ‘Let This Remain’ (2017) which will also be included in her upcoming EP.

Colin Polonowski

Updated: Sep 06, 2019

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Alana Henderson teams up with Joshua Burnside on haunting new track ‘On Board’ | The Digital Fix