Duke Garwood is bringing his respite from the apocalypse, ‘Garden of Ashes’, to Oslo in Hackney on 16 February.
Preceded by the single ‘Coldblooded’, Garwood considers his sixth album a place of sanctuary from an increasingly crazy world.
“This album is about midnight in the garden of love. The garden of good and evil. The garden of paradise that we know is being destroyed to satisfy the greedy money people. It’s all burned down. We burned it to ashes,” explains the South London bluesman.
“I am an angry man; so angry I burn myself. So angry I heat up the air around me. This is the nuclear fuel I use to make music,” he continues. “In a world so full of pain and madness we need to be better than ever; to evolve not devolve. To become masters of our fate and stop listening to the snake talkers who would steal our last breath. It’s time to go Elvis and shoot the cursed TV.”
But don’t think ‘Garden of Ashes’ is a collection of aggressive songs.
“I make beautiful music, because we don’t need angry music right now,” reasons Garwood. “Everyone can turn on the TV and see the horror show, they don’t need to hear it coming out the stereo. I’m trying to distil this frustrating feeling we all have right now into something more focused,” the Mark Lanegan collaborator says of the follow-up to 2015’s ‘Heavy Love’.
“I was inspired to follow ‘Heavy Love’ with a warm bath of honey for the soul. It’s a stare down to the beast of hate trying to take over our garden. Time for Man to be the beautiful warrior and stand up for his loves,” Garwood says.
Produced by Strat Barrett and recorded at Garwood’s own Valley Heights studio and Giant Wafer in Wales, the album features Paul May on drums, Pete Marsh on double bass, and Smoke Fairies’ Emily on backing vocals.
“This record is fantasy music,” Duke concludes. “Beautiful apocalypse love music, it doesn’t hide from reality, but it could hide the listener from it all for a while.”