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Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Monday 12 March 2018

After A Seven Year Itch Snow Patrol Return With New Album Wilderness

Snow Patrol will return later this spring with Wildness, their first album in seven years, which finds the band searching for clarity, connection, and meaning, while staying true to the melodic songwriting prowess that brought them to prominence. 

Wildness taps into something raw and primitive, and lead-singer and songwriter Gary Lightbody says of the album: 

"There are many types of wildness, but I think it can be distilled into two: the wildness of the modern age, all it's confusion, illogic and alienation and a more ancient wildness. 

"Something primal, alive and beautiful that speaks to our true connectivity, our passion, our love, our communion with nature and each other. 

"This is the kind of wildness the album is centred around. The loss of it. Trying to reconnect with it. To remember it." 
 
After their Fallen Empires tour ended in 2012, band members —which also include multi-instrumentalist Johnny McDaid, guitarist Nathan Connolly, bassist Paul Wilson, and drummer Jonny Quinn — decided to take a step back from the band, and focus on their own projects. 

Gary Lightbody continued his work with his Tired Pony side project with members of Belle and Sebastian, R.E.M, Reindeer Section and Fresh Young Fellows and moved to Los Angeles to begin writing songs for movies.. 

Taking this extended break from Snow Patrol proved to be a source of inspiration, and writing songs that were not pulled directly from his own psyche helped heal what Lightbody considered to be not so much writer"s block as life block. 


It's in this search for clarity and connection that these songs were written and refined. 

"I think it"s the first record I've ever written that I haven"t just asked a bunch of questions. I actually tried to figure out why I was unhappy, why I feel out of place, why I'm afraid," says Lightbody. 

"There's nothing really to protect myself for - it's all in the album. I want to remember." 

This impulse was partially inspired by Lightbody's father, who is suffering from dementia. 

"I think the album is defined by memory in a lot of ways," says Lightbody, "including my father's loss of memory."

The album is produced once more by the great Jacknife Lee, Snow Patrol's longtime producer and collaborator. 

Life on Earth opens the album with its mission statement, "this is something else, this is something else." Heal Me feels like an ancient hymn: 

"Finally, after way too many years of smashing my body to bits with booze, I met someone who helped me find my way back to health and clarity," says Lightbody. 

"This song is about her, that journey and is dedicated to her."

The last track, Life and Death, is a rumination, and a human story of love and forgiveness— mostly self-forgiveness for Lightbody, demonstrating that perhaps everyone ought to take this long between albums to reflect long and hard before they write. 

"Seamus Heaney, my favourite poet of all time, said at 71 that he was only discovering what some of his poetry means, and this is coming from a Nobel Prize-winning poet. 

"It"s a great testament to inspiration," says Lightbody

"Sometimes it takes you five years to write the thing. Like now. And you know for sure when you finish an album like that, where you've poured over every detail and put every atom of yourself into it, everything makes sense and I bet you I'm never not proud of this record."

Snow Patrol's new album, 'Wildness', is released on 25th May 2018. CLICK HERE for more info. 

by: Mike Cobley



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