Florence Welch, the ethereal musical fairy-witch and frontwoman of Florence + the Machine, has released her first single since 2016 to celebrate Record Store Day, “Sky Full of Song.”
Based on the title alone, it will live up to Florence’s unique spiritual aesthetic. In November 2017, she announced she would be releasing her first book, “Useless Magic,” a collection of poetry and lyrics, in July 2018.
Since the release of “How Big, How Beautiful, How Blue” in 2015, Florence has been collaborating with artists like Lady Gaga (“Hey Girl”) and releasing singles for video games like “Wish That You Were Here.”
While Florence hinted late last year that she is working on new music, there is no set date for the release of a fourth studio album, although some sources have speculated that it would be released before the end of 2018.
Of the new single, Florence shares in a statement: “This was a song that just fell out of the sky fully formed… Sometimes when you are performing you get so high, it’s hard to know how to come down. There is this feeling of being cracked open, rushing endlessly outwards and upwards, and wanting somebody to hold you still, bring you back to yourself. It’s an incredible, celestial, but somehow lonely feeling.”
The juxtaposition between “incredible” and “lonely” is telling, and perhaps a good indicator of the tone of the upcoming album. In an interview with The Telegraph, she shares that her new music was born out of a “black hole” she fell into after a series of “setbacks” in her personal life.
The song begins with Florence’s voice, isolated, a cappella style. Of course, it wouldn’t be a Florence song without a haunting choir-like harmony echoing intermittently throughout. While the instruments are minimal, and the song may appear to be simple, it is with artistic intention. Florence’s large soulful voice, and poignant lyrics, dominate the track.
In the video, directed by AG Rojas, she is lying on the floor, open to the universe, almost as if she’s praying, or rather questioning it. Once the shot pans out, we see she’s in a stark black and white world, with small piles of newly planted trees and/or plants surrounding her. Perhaps, they are a metaphor for her spirit, beginning to grow, despite the darkness. By the end of the video, she gazes up a ladder, which extends beyond the reach of the shot, and at the top we see the flower blooming in colour. “Sky Full of Song” is a song full of soul- but most importantly, a song full of hope, and creative rebirth.
“Sky Full of Song” will be released on a limited-edition 7-inch vinyl on Record Story Day (April 21st). For more vinyl, check out LemonWire’s vinyl store collection here.
While “Sky Full of Song” is a great teaser, we will continue to wait patiently (or not so patiently) for Florence + the Machine’s full-length album. Until then, read our list of the Seven of the Most Underrated Songs by Florence + The Machine.