Anathema reveal details & cover artwork for new studio album The Optimist
Due out on Kscope on 9th June 2017
noun: optimist; plural noun: optimists
a person who tends to be hopeful and confident about the future or the success of something.
a person who believes that this world is the best of all possible worlds or that good must ultimately prevail
After Anathemas 2012 award-winning album Weather Systems and 2014s spellbinding Distant Satellites, the ambient
rockers are back with their eleventh full-length, The Optimist. Due for release on 9th June through Kscope The Optimist will
soon reveal some of the darkest, most challenging and unexpected music the sextet have put their name to.
Anathema, led by brothers Daniel and Vincent Cavanagh, along with drummer John Douglas, singer Lee Douglas, bassist Jamie
Cavanagh and drummer/keyboardist Daniel Cardoso began recording The Optimist in the winter of 2016 at Attica Audio in Donegal,
Ireland and then finished at Castle Of Doom studios in Glasgow with producer Tony Doogan [Mogwai, Belle & Sebastian, Super
Furry Animals] at the helm. Vincent elaborates on Doogans influence on the recording process he suggested that
we record as a live band, which we hadnt done for years. Having played a few tunes on the last tour, we were ready for
that. Tony wanted to capture that energy you can only get with everyone facing each other
it makes a big difference.
He was a superb guy to work with and I learned a lot making this record
the-optimist-art-smlThe idea for The Optimist was born from the front cover artwork of the bands 2001 album A Fine Day
To Exit Daniel Cavanagh explains I suppose you might say the album is semi-autobiographical because this time we used
a surrogate, he says, of the character that is The Optimist We put sound, feelings and crucially, our own hopes
and fears into another person and made him the subject of the songs then weaving my own internal monologue into the narrative
of The Optimist. It was Johns idea to write a narrative, so I took A Fine Day To Exit as the starting point. Vincent
elaborates further on the earlier albums artwork influence The guy who disappeared you never knew what
happened to him, did he start a new life? Did he succumb to his fate? It was never explained. The opening track title is the
exact coordinates for Silver Strand beach in San Diego the last known location of The Optimist shown on the
cover of A Fine Day to Exit.
To continue the theme further, the band brought back designer and illustrator Travis Smith to create the artwork for The Optimist.
The artwork was created from a series of photographs Smith took on a West Coast road trip.
With the characters unresolved destiny the three song writing members, meticulously brought the unfinished story to
an end and most strikingly of all one which is decided by the listener.