Ahead of the release of IAMTHEMORNING’s new studio album The Bell, on 2nd August, the Russian duo, comprising of virtuoso classical pianist Gleb Kolyadin and charismatic vocalist Marjana Semkina, have revealed their new single “Song Of Psyche” with a stunning and ethereal animated video.
Marjana Semkina reveals the legend that inspired both the song and her concept for the video “The song is vaguely based on a story of Cupid and Psyche, originally written by Lucius Apuleius Madaurensis (Platonicus) for his Metamorphoses in the 2nd century and borrowed by the Pre-Raphaelites for their paintings. It’s a story of a beautiful mortal woman, who had to go all the way to Hell to earn her place next to her lover Cupid. She’s sent to the Underworld by Aphrodite, who really isn’t expecting her to come back, to retrieve a box filled with beauty ointment from Persephone (my personal favourite 🙂 but Persephone puts eternal death-like sleep in the box instead. Curious as she is, Psyche opens the box and falls asleep – and then Cupid comes to rescue her. But, since I’m not a big fan of cheesy happy endings, I imagined the story in a different way as you’ll see in the video”
“This is the first time we collaborated with Adam Warne ( https://www.hereisadam.com/) on a project like this, although we met during the Ocean Sounds filming sessions, as he was working with Crystal Spotlight as camera man. His aesthetics are very pure and cute and is in keeping with ours, so we thought it’d be appropriate to invite him to work with us on this video. It was a lovely experience, despite having extremely little time for the project, he went out of his way to make every change I requested which has resulted in this exquisite video”
She continues, explaining how the track fits into The Bell and it’s origination “song of Psyche is on the softer side of the album. It was the last song added to the track list and I originally wrote it on guitar, which doesn’t happen very often with this band. It went through some transformations when guys (Gleb & our sound engineer/guest guitarist Vlad) added to it but it’s still one of the mellow and more accessible songs of The Bell.”
The duo’s dedication to writing forward-thinking and thought-provoking music sees them create a new album of impressive depth and playability. A modern blend of rock, classical and folk, The Bell makes use of 19th Century song cycles – a style established by Schubert – that cohesively tells 10 individual stories. Marjana explains in more detail “The Bell is divided into two parts but each song is a story in its own right, all of them are fuelled by human cruelty and pain caused by it. Cruelty is the central theme of the album – together with all the different ways we respond to it and cope with it. This album is multi-layered and is, in many ways, a journey inward, taking us inside of a mind of a person suffering from abuse or neglect or open hostility of the society or a specific person. Aesthetically, the album is based on themes taken from Victorian England’s art and culture, but more in a way of turning our attention to the fact that at its core, humankind isn’t making much progress in terms of emotional maturity.”
The Bell was recorded in March 2019 across Russia, the UK and Canada in several studios: Mosfilm in Moscow; Lendoc and Red Wave in St Petersburg; Noatune in London; The Studio at Sunbeams, Penrith; and Union Sound Company in Toronto. With engineering and mastering handled by Vlad Avy.
The album’s beautiful cover artwork was created by the band’s favoured collaborator Constantine Nagishkin. Marjana explains the imagery “on the cover is a safety coffin bell – it’s a 19th century idea born from people’s obsessive fear of being buried alive, having been provoked by a lot of press attention to supposed cases of premature burials across the country. and the fact that Edgar Allan Poe frightened many readers by vividly describing the premature burial phenomenon in his short stories.
“One of the inventions to escape such a terrifying ordeal was a so called “safety coffin” that existed in many different configurations, including the one that had a bell attached to the gravestone with a thread that was attached to it and went all the way underground into the coffin so that the when the poor soul awoke and on realizing he’s been buried alive, could ring to let the people outside know what has happened.
“Although the idea is a bit morbid I feel there is hope in the artwork too – no matter how low you are or desperate you think your situation is, you can still call for help, but more than that you have to call for help if you need it”
Digital pre-orders receive “Ghost Of A Story” & “Song Of Psyche” as instant downloads.
Iamthemorning have confirmed they will be playing numerous shows in support of The Bell, beginning with European dates with Riverside in September including some headline shows in The Netherlands and UK – details below