Amelia Warner announces the release of her new EP, ‘Haven’, out on 19th June on Decca Records.
Recorded at the countryside home she shares with her three daughters and husband, actor Jamie Dornan, the intimate five-track EP combines the warming tones of a grand piano and brass instrumentation, evoking a sense of comfort and poignancy to the senses. “To me it was about this sense of coming home,” says Amelia, “the home being a haven and a place of joy and safety.”
The track ‘Drawing Room’ opens with a minimalist melody with the added sweetness of birdsong, while the emotive ‘We Came Home’ is an inspiriting, stately piano composition. The undisputable centrepiece is ‘For Love’, which swells with majestic brass until its euphoric tinkling piano and percussion apex conjures a sense of celebration. The cinematic ‘Fable’ layers ambience onto its circling piano motif, and finally, ‘On This Side’ shimmers with warm brassy undertones.
Written both before and during her most recent pregnancy, ‘Haven’ was intended to be recorded at a studio before the arrival of her third baby, but when sickness struck, she had to rethink. “It was my third pregnancy, and it was the hardest one by a long way; I was just really ill the whole time.” So Amelia waited for her baby girl, who arrived a fortnight after the family moved to their new house in the countryside.
Weeks after giving birth in March 2019, a cohort of esteemed musicians gathered in her living room: Mike Lovatt and Dan Newell on trumpet, Richard Watkins on horn, Andy Wood on trombone, Owen Slade on tuba and Mitch Taylor on guitar, and they made use of the homely surroundings. “Because the record was really inspired by the house, we wanted to capture home in the recording and so we recorded the birdsong outside and the fire crackling. Even the artwork for the EP is a painting by Betsy Bradley that adorns the wall of the living room.”
Amelia has also filmed the video content and visuals for the EP at a social distance in her home and garden with her friend, professional ballet dancer Nell Maude.
First known and admired for her acting work in Lorna Doone, Aeon Flux and Mansfield Park, to name but a few, Amelia went on to carve out a successful career in the music under the pen-name of ‘Slow Moving Millie’. Her cover of The Smiths’ ‘Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want’ landed her the coveted John Lewis Christmas advert in 2011.
However, Amelia soon realised it was composing music rather than being in the spotlight as a singer or actor which is the self-professed introvert’s true haven and has provided the biggest highlights of her career to date. She penned the stunning soundtrack for the 2018 Irish-American film Mary Shelley, directed by Haifaa al-Mansour and starring Elle Fanning, which won her the ‘Breakthrough Composer Of The Year’ award at the 2019 International Film Music Critics Association Awards and a nomination in the ‘Discovery Of the Year’ category at the World Soundtrack Awards. Her previous solo EP ‘Visitors’ (2017) followed her debut EP ‘Arms’ (2015) in becoming the #1 classical album on the iTunes chart.
The release of the home-inspired ‘Haven’ at a time when home has been the epicentre for people thrown into months of lockdown feels more than apt. “In some ways, it’s a perfect time for it to come out. Who knew that we’d all be spending quite so much time in our homes? There are moments of joy and triumph within.”
On her new EP, Amelia invites you to Step into this ‘Haven’ and let it envelop you in its warm and uplifting sound
Tracklisting – ‘Haven’
1. Drawing Room
2. We Came Home
3. For Love
5. On This Side