This Autumn, esteemed singer/songwriter ADDIE BRIK returns with a brand new album: ‘That Dog Don’t Hunt’.
The album is preceded today by the new single “Gearless”, which is available to listen to now.
WATCH THE VIDEO FOR “GEARLESS” HERE || STREAM ON SPOTIFY HERE
Released on 25 November via Itza Records, ‘That Dog Don’t Hunt’ is the Georgia-born, Scottish-based artist’s first release since 2018’s acclaimed ‘I Have A Doctor On Board’ and is confirmed to feature contributions from Deacon Blue’s Jim Prime, Alex Rex of Trembling Bells, and Robbie MacIntosh (Paul McCartney / The Pretenders).
Its lead single “Gearless”, is a deceptively breezy alt/country cut adorned with loping pedal steel guitars and glittering acoustic arpeggios. Tying-in with the wider record’s themes of misinformation, corruption and political tensions, Addie explains of the track:
“We live in dangerous times. This is a poem about it. Though not directly related, the 1984 full interview with KGB defector Yuri Bezmenov (master of Soviet propaganda), The Four Stages of Ideological Subversion, is a must see.”
Taking its title from a Southern expression that pithily implies that “the path you’re going down isn’t going to work out”, Addie’s new album, ‘That Dog Don’t Hunt’, is one of a political damnation for the decline of Western society and culture. It’s a record that rages against the vilification of truth-sayers and whistleblowers. Against the corrosion of free thought and the tide of dissolution our human liberties face in the 21st Century. It is also one that attempts to see through anger and disillusionment to find a deeper feeling of compassion and understanding of how and why things have come to be.
Speaking about the key themes that flow through upcoming album, Addie explains:
“It’s about betrayal and the correction of that, belief in the Golden Mean, symmetry that looks like sacred geometry as opposed to chaos. The US Constitution was written for “The one dissenting voice”. The overarching thought is, is it true, is it good, is it beautiful?”
Reaching out to Steve Shelley of Sonic Youth with a clutch of new songs in hand, he was suitably impressed by demos of her new material and arranged for Addie and a band of musicians, who she had never previously connected with, to set up camp at Fernando Vacas’ private studio in Córdoba.
After a last-minute change of circumstances Shelley himself was unable to attend. With a headstrong confidence in her latest work and a dogged determination to make the best of the situation, Addie soon found a chemistry as well as kindness in the strangers who had assembled for her in that southern Spanish town. Very quickly it became apparent that something very special was in the making. As Addie remembers:
“In the end something happened to Steve, he cut out the day before we were to all meet in Spain. It was awkward because none of us knew each other from Adam, and it was hair’s breadth from being cancelled, but in the end it was fantastic, the ideas and recording were flowing (along with good food and wine). None of us could have imagined the atmosphere being the same had Steve been there. A lucky disaster.”
Returning to Scotland as the world found itself in the tailspin of global lockdowns, the rest of what would become ‘That Dog Don’t Hunt’ was completed there.
Utilising the benefits of her neighbour in Troon, who just happens to be Deacon Blue’s Jim Prime, the pair would often chat and write socially-distanced via the telephone as a strange new normal unfurled beyond the window panes. Offering his expertise on programming, Prime also laid-down the sensational keys and Hammond organs that effuse amidst the album centre-pieces “Retromingent” and “Don’t Touch The Pitch”.
Finding ways to make the most of that difficult period, Addie was also able to enlist legendary guitarist Robbie Mcintosh (Paul McCartney / The Pretenders), who offered contributions from his Scottish home studio. Further afield, Glenn Lewis added guitars and percussion from his base in Melbourne, whereas engineer Bob Coke and bassist Stephen Harrison added to the international mix from Bob’s studio in Paris. By no mean feat, the thirty-strong children’s choir from The Scottish National Youth Choir (as heard on the spine-tingling “Retromingent”) were also conducted and arranged completely remotely.
As the situation eased, writing retreats on the Isle of Skye with resident artist Doc Livingston (Kings of Kaakon / Uncle Rocket) would add to the record’s inherent sense of spaciousness and quiet contemplation, whereas in-person sessions in Glasgow with Jim McDermott (Simple Minds / The Silencers) and Alex Rex (Trembling Bells) would bless the album with their nuanced drum and vocal talents.
Produced in its entirety by Addie Brik herself, the resultant album, ‘That Dog Don’t Hunt’, is one unafraid to make a powerful statement, backed by arrangements of a foreboding darkness and simmering intensity.
From the Kate Bush-esque bombast ‘The First Odd Prime’, a track that manages to find common ground between farflung songwriting topics of the Fibonacci sequence to the Charles Laughton film ‘Night of The Hunter’, its kitchen-sink approach ignites the set with a tempestuous opener declares that this is not an album to be underestimated at any point. The seven-minute epic “Retromingent” delivers a searing commentary on tolerance and comeuppance, to a score that burns with the slow-burning majesty of Talk Talk’s ‘Spirit of Eden’ era. Elsewhere, the breathless “Don’t Touch The Pitch” provides a towering centrepoint with its piston-like percussion and electrifying guitar breaks; a cautionary tale of despicable greed and a fate decided at the mercy of the mythological Furies.
“The Furies here do battle with the greedy, avaricious, miscreants and cowards of this world and the lesson is: Do Not Touch That Money. Poison” addresses Addie of the latter.
With a decidedly different side-B mellowed in tones of Americana, pastoral folk and expansive alt/country; tracks like the tender love-song “Posy” to the homesick blues of the title-track, signal that ‘That Dog Don’t Hunt’ has more than just a few old tricks up its sleeve.
At just six tracks long, ‘That Dog Don’t Hunt’ is an album quite at odds with its title. Perfectly realised in the path it takes and the stand it wishes to take, it’s a record that burns with a luminescent sense of ambition and a calescent political intent, before dissipating long it can outstay its welcome.
Mixed jointly by Tufty, Paul Stacey and Pierre Marchand, additional mixing and Mastering was contributed by Mark Beazley (Itza Records). ‘That Dog Don’t Hunt’ by Addie Brik will be available on 25 November, via Itza Records.
Writer, singer and producer Addie Brik is from Savannah Georgia, she relocated to the UK in 1998 and now resides in Scotland. She started writing poetry in her teens. This led to the prestigious Naropa Institute where she was mentored by Allen Ginsberg and famed CBS journalist, John Steinbeck Jr.
She was bitten by the performance bug when she joined a young artist’s troupe on Francis Ford Coppola’s lot at Zoetrope with such luminaries as Ed Harris and produced and acted in a production of Sam Shepard’s ‘Cowboy Blues’ there.
Her interests have embraced other arts but early-on she realised her best form of expression was through words and music. Peter Gabriel discovered her demo tape, which led to a deal with Geffen Records with Andy Gill (Gang of Four) producing.
Her collaborations and co-writes include work with Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Plaid, Tarwater, Wendy and Lisa, Sugarhill Gang, Luke Vibert, BJ Cole, members of Funkadelic, Fishbone, Maxim Rysanov, Andrei Samsonov, HB Barnum (Aretha Franklin’s legendary writer and arranger), Kate St. John, John Philip Shenale, Simple Minds, Deacon Blue.
Addie’s previous release, ‘I Have A Doctor On Board’. Recorded in Glasgow and written in a small room, overlooking the Firth of Clyde at home in Troon, Scotland, the album is based around a series of interviews she had with an inventor and a lifeboat captain in Scotland, It was released in 2018 to warm reviews, with her much anticipated follow-up, ‘That Dog Don’t Hunt’ confirmed for release in Autumn 2022.