Jehnny Beth of Savages and Bobby Gillespie of Primal Scream have announced they will be releasing a collaborative album, Utopian Ashes, on July 2 via Third Man records. Along with the album announcement, Beth and Gillespie have shared a new single titled “Remember We Were Lovers,” which was accompanied by a music video that had been directed by Douglas Hart.
“When you write a song you marry the personal with the fictional and make art,” Gillespie said in a press statement. “I was thinking about two people living alone, together but apart, existing and suffering in a psychic malaise, who plough on because of responsibilities and commitments. It’s about the impermanence of everything – an existential fact that everyone has to face at some point in their lives.
“Remember We Were Lovers” features slow and emotional tones, Beth’s vocals in a soft whisper beneath Gillespie. The pair croons the lyrics, calling to one another as the instrumentals take on heartfelt tones. A whining guitar solo takes listeners through the final bridge, Gillespie and Beth crying to one another, “Remember we were lovers.”
“In the same way you create characters for a novel, we’ve created characters here,” Beth had said in a press statement. “But you put yourself in it, because you’re trying to understand the human situation. The singing has to be authentic. That’s all that matters.”
The music video for the track was shot in black and white, trees traveling up across the screen. Both Beth and Gillespie look down, staring off toward the horizon. Landscapes stretch out behind them, both artists carrying somber faces as they reflect on the failing relationship between their characters. Beth stands in the middle of a forest, while Gillespie walks across a beach.
The pair first met in 2015, and the upcoming Utopian Ashes will feature Beth’s frequent collaborator Johnny Hostile on bass, while Primal Scream’s Andrew Innes, Martin Duffy and Darrin Mooney will play guitar, piano and drums, respectively. The upcoming album had been inspired by country soul duets.
Beth had released a music video for her song “French Countryside” last February and released an animated short film “We Will Sin Together” back in June. Her most recent album had been TO LOVE IS TO LIVE, which had been released last June as well.
Utopian Ashes tracklist:
1. “Chase It Down”
2. “English Town”
3. “Remember We Were Lovers”
4. “Your Heart Will Always Be Broken”
5. “Stones of Silence”
6. “You Don’t Know What Love Is”
7. “Self-Crowned King of Nothingness”
8. “You Can Trust Me Now”
9. “Living a Lie”
10. “Sink in Reverie”
Photo credit: Marv Watson