Artist News Releases

Laura Mvula announces return with “the album I always wanted make”

By | Published on Thursday 18 March 2021

Laura Mvula

Laura Mvula has announced that she will release her third album, ‘Pink Noise’, this summer. It came together, she says, after a period of disillusionment and plans to leave the music industry entirely. Instead, she made “the album I always wanted to make”.

“Three years ago I knew I’d made a promise I couldn’t keep”, she explains. “After two albums, I was sure I had nothing to say. I felt like ‘Sing To The Moon’ was just a happy accident anyway, so I looked for teaching posts in Hackney. I began to accept that I was ‘too old to be pop’ and ‘no longer relevant enough to break through'”.

“I couldn’t be bothered publicly ‘failing again'”, she goes on, commenting on the relatively poor commercial performance of her nevertheless critically acclaimed second album ‘The Dreaming Room’. Its disappointing sales compared to her debut ‘Sing To The Moon’ led to Mvula being dropped by Sony Music in 2017.

“I sought comfort in deeply patient friends and family”, she says. “I practised feeling that feeling – the need to be safe, the need to escape. I fuelled up on my favourite music of the past and spent days, weeks, months hovered over my hardly-a-home-studio: a laptop, midi keyboard and USB mic. And then, sat in my PJs, on a rainy Sunday afternoon, a new chapter was born – ‘Safe Passage’ was here”.

‘Safe Passage’ being the single she released earlier this month, and the opening track of the new album.

“This is the album I always wanted to make”, she continues. “Every corner is made warm with sunset tones of the 80s. I was born in 1986. I came out of the womb wearing shoulder pads. I absorbed the dynamism of the 80s aesthetic right from my first moments on this planet. Wrestling with identity seems to be one of the rites of passage of the established artist. Making ‘Pink Noise’ felt like the most violent of emotional wrestling matches”.

“It took three years of waiting and waiting and fighting and dying and nothingness and then finally an explosion of sound”, she adds. “As if it was always here, this record is my most honest and unapologetic flying of the freedom flag. In my adult years, I had forgotten how important dance was to me as a vital tool of my creative expression. I brought it back, just for me, so I could find my delight in dance again. And now I can’t stop dancing. I can’t wait to play this album live”.

Alongside the announcement that ‘Pink Noise’ will be out on 2 Jul through Warner’s Atlantic label, comes new single ‘Church Girl’.

“I am not my story”, she says of the inspiration for the song. “For so long I identified as the things that happen in my life, the things I do, good or bad. I’m letting go of this mind-made ‘me’. I’m coming home to myself beyond the realm of form. I am not the thoughts in my head, or the things I achieve, or the shape of my haircut. I no longer ‘dance with the devil’ on my back. I’m basking in the light of knowing my true self, the deeper ‘I'”.

Listen to ‘Church Girl’ here: