Denison Witmer is the stunning new album from Philadelphia's Denison Witmer, which is due to be released on Asthmatic Kitty Records on 6 May. A collection of 10 songs inspired by love, loss, self-affirmation and self-discovery. Witmer's gentle sound is thoughtful and atmospheric as the album engulfs the listener and continues to unveil itself upon each hearing. The release of his self-titled disc-his ninth full-length-comes as an occasion to reflect on what he's learned from a career in music: to be patient, to trust in happy accidents, and to admit every once in a while that he isn't totally in control.
The album was inspired by an epiphany that Denison had when visiting the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. On viewing the early work of one of his artistic heroes, Denison was struck by the vast array of Van Gogh's earlier works, before his most famous period. He had a simple, yet powerful, realisation that our past experiences truly shape who we are and have a profound impact on the present. Music, like art, is more about the process, song by song and album by album in pursuit of "something". Denison Witmer, the album, brings Denison Witmer, the artist, one step closer to that something.
Honesty is the hallmark of Denison's songwriting: personal lyrics, lack of pretense, and complex acoustic guitar work, mixed with gentle ambience and patient production. With help from William Fitzsimmons, label-mate Sufjan Stevens, and Devin Greenwood (Norah Jones, Amos Lee), Witmer crafts songs that have depth, but are easily accessible, with a lyric honesty that resonates with fans.
Mon June 3 - The Islington, London - 8 adv/7.30pm
Tue June 4 - Blacks, London (Society of the Golden Slippers)
Wed June 5 - The Castle, Manchester
Swinton herself is an ex-boarding school pupil.