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A unique new album of poetry and music featuring Marianne Faithfull set to the music of Warren Ellis, and featuring Nick Cave, Brian Eno and Vincent Ségal. With She Walks in Beauty, Marianne Faithfull with composer and multi-instrumentalist Warren Ellis releases one of the most distinctive and singular albums of her long, extraordinary life and career. It was recorded just before and during the first Covid-19 lockdown – during which the singer herself became infected and almost died of the disease – with musical friends and family including not only composer Warren Ellis but Nick Cave, Brian Eno, cellist Vincent Ségal and producer-engineer Head.
She Walks in Beauty fulfils Faithfull’s long-held ambition to record an album of poetry with music. It’s a record that draws on her passion for the English Romantic poets, a passion she fostered in her A Level studies with one Mrs Simpson at St Joseph’s Convent School in Reading. Drawing deep on the poetry of Shelley, Keats, Byron, Wordsworth, Tennyson and Thomas Hood, Faithfull’s vocal performances set to Ellis’s subtle collages of sound draw out the heart, the quick, the vibrant living matter in all these great poems, making them fresh, renewing them with the complex, lived-in timbres of her voice, and set to a subtle palette of ambient musical settings. It’s both a radical departure and a return to her original inspirations as an artist and performer.