Anna of the North has premiered brand new track ‘Learning On Myself’, her first taste of new music since critically-acclaimed debut album ‘Lovers’. Having sold out worldwide shows and amassed over 140 million streams, Anna headlines London’s Village Underground on March 25th before beginning her US tour in April.
‘Leaning On Myself’ marks a clean break from the past as much as it explores the unique way with melancholic, alternative pop that is unmistakably Anna of the North’s own. From the shimmering, Scandinavian electronica of her debut followed a period in LA, collaborations with the likes of Tyler, the Creator, and the musical and emotional transitions that are evoked in raw but assertive style on ‘Leaning On Myself’. Describing this period of solitude and self-examination for the first time today, Anna says…
“I’ve been writing a lot of music the past year. ‘Leaning On Myself” is one of the songs that came out of it, maybe one of my favourite songs. I remember flying home from the States where we wrote it and I started crying. I kind of realized I’d written the soundtrack of my life one year ago. There was a point in where I went through a lot of shit and I wasn’t feeling very well. I had one big break down where I called my mom and just knew I had to change my ways. I had to cut some people out of my life, people I loved but I knew weren’t really good for me. It was tough. But I’m good now. Every time I listen to this song it takes me back to that moment. It’s fucking sad but also powerful. I’m very grateful for where I am today. In the end you only have yourself, you know, and I guess that’s ok.”
It’s a feeling that’s brought to surreal life in the accompanying video for ‘Leaning On Myself’, which sees an Anna travel through an ethereal desert landscape to destinations unknown. “I met Noah Lee who directed the video and love his previous work,” she adds. “I’d always wanted to have elf ears and wings…next thing you know it became reality.
Whilst Anna of the North has spent much time following the release of her debut album working out what comes next, ‘Lovers’ was busy taking on an unexpected life of its own. These songs of heartache, guilt and the tentative joys of moving on have united a rich global audience in their intimate shared experiences. Few modern artists, too, could appear as at home working with Tyler, the Creator (Anna lent her vocals to two tracks on ‘Flower Boy’) and Rejjiie Snow as they are duetting with HONNE or landing a viral remix by The Chainsmokers. The record’s word-of-mouth success culminated in the title track taking off via a surprise sync in Netflix’s seminal smash hit ‘To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before’: ‘Lovers’ is still streaming over 100K times per day, 5 months later, and made the top 100 charts in 171 countries. It’s a modern-day slow-burn fitting for songs to fall in love to, and an artist even more people, you sense, are about to fall in love with…
All of which has led Anna of the North – at times, entirely by accident – to where she finds herself in 2019. That rare songwriter who strikes an emotional chord regardless of continent, collaborator or genre. A pop star who has perhaps always been hiding in plain sight. And a fearless young woman ultimately ‘Leaning On Myself’.
3/19 – Village Underground, London
4/19 – Brighton Music Hall (Boston, MA)
4/21 – U Street Music Hall (Washington, DC)
4/22 – Music Hall of Williamsburg (Brooklyn, NY)
4/24 – Troubadour (Los Angeles, CA)
4/26 – Popscene (San Francisco, CA)