At a time when both politics and the planet seem to be spinning out of control, Colin Devlin’s new album High Point takes the sonic high ground. The world has shifted since this Irish singer and songwriter released his acclaimed solo debut Democracy of One in 2010, but his approach to finely crafted music remains steadfast, with warm arrangements and timely lyrics about exploring the darkness and light of human relationships.
Devlin first earned his reputation for atmospheric songs and nuanced vocals during the 1990s and early 2000s, when his band The Devlins received four stars from Rolling Stone and placed songs in more than a dozen films and TV shows. After the success of his first solo album, Devlin won “Best Irish Male” at the Meteor Music Awards in 2010 and co-wrote several tracks on Janiva Magness’s 2016 album Love Wins Again, which earned him a Grammy nomination.
Now, Colin Devlin continues his signature sound on 2018’s High Point. His second solo effort was produced by longtime collaborator Pierre Marchand (Sarah McLachlan, Rufus Wainwright) and recalls the work of classic mood masters such as David Bowie, Brian Eno, Peter Gabriel, and David Sylvian. Recorded in Los Angeles and Montreal in 2017, the album’s lineup includes Marchand and Devlin on piano, guitar and keyboards; guest guitarist Michael Brook; brother Peter Devlin on bass; Matt Chamberlain (Tori Amos, Garbage) on drums; and Jeremy Ruzumna (Fitz and the Tantrums) on piano and keys. Blue Elan artist Chelsea Williams adds vocal harmonies to several songs.
“The album was finished during nine days at Clear Lake Studios when all the musicians were together,” he says. “We rented a house in Los Feliz with a pool, and it all felt very rock and roll––until I realized that my three-year-old daughter had erased the production notes from my iPhone’s voice memos. Thankfully, it was perfect timing. We had just laid down the last track.”
Glide is proud to premiere “This Is Where We Are” a composition that recalls Tom Petty’s aching harmonizing and broad rock influences. Devlin sings with a sincerity and grace that makes for a lasting melodic dent and impact on first listen – those often reserved for the Knopflers and Springsteens of the world.
“Between my first album Democracy of One and the new one, I married, had two children, and started to see life through a different lens,” Devlin says of the writing a recording of High Point. “The songs express an awareness of the beauty and temporality of life. We get so caught up, sometimes we don’t stop to realize how momentous each day can be.”