Exuding passion and tender beauty in equal measure, Sorcha Richardson songwriting of poetry and introspection connects with people who have shared similar tangled emotions.
‘Discover the Artist’ is our new blog series where we introduce you to artists you might not have heard of yet… but need to listen to.
Irish singer-songwriter Sorcha Richardson has been cultivating a cult fanbase for several years. Songs such as ‘Ruin Your Night’, ‘Petrol Station’ and ‘Can’t We Pretend’ are evocative vignettes of a moment in time which find the poetry in introspection.
If you like: Sharon Van Etten, Arcade Fire, Phoebe Bridgers and Julia Jacklin.
Listen to… her new album ‘First Prize Bravery’ released on November 2019 was nominated for the RTE Choice Music Prize 2020.
It’s a collection of lyrical snapshots of life as a twentysomething, accompanied by the desires, doubts and developments that the decade delivers.
“It’s the hidden meaning in mundane moments,” she summarises. “Days that look like any other day and yet somehow you have this feeling that it’s one you’ll remember forever.”
Read… about her career and new album:
Richardson left home for Brooklyn as a teenager to study creative writing. She’d assumed her background as a drummer would lead to her playing in a college band, but instead, she ended up recording lo-fi demos in her dorm. Picking up traction on SoundCloud gave her the confidence that she could sing, while her studies sharpened her lyrical focus.
Moving back to Dublin inspired her to take stock of where she was. A new rush of ideas soon followed, with Richardson writing the likes of ‘False Alarm’ and ‘First Prize Bravery’ on the piano in her parents’ kitchen. An impromptu session with All Tvvins’ Conor Adams yielded ‘No-One Is Any Fun’, which features on their album ‘Just To Exist’, and ‘Twisting The Knife’ which is included here.
The final piece in the puzzle took an almost interventionist turn. Richardson was visiting friends in Los Angeles when she ran into Alex Casnoff, the producer of several of her singles and previously a member of the bands Dawes and Harriet. He’d been focusing on film projects rather than music, but the pair reignited their connection with Casnoff coming on board to produce the entire record. They completed the album within a month, with Richardson contributing vocals and guitar, and Casnoff synths and piano.
Touring in Ireland resulted in the realisation that “the songs that are the most fun to play are the ones that feel most like a band”, which inspired the album’s live, guitar-based core. Those live elements are also important within every track, regardless of how big or small the arrangement was.
As her songs look back, it’s fitting that this album represents Sorcha Richardson’s future. “Releasing singles was fun because I felt a lot of freedom move around creatively. But I’m excited to present a more 360 version of what I have in my head. It lets me tell a more complete story.”