Award-winning Northern Irish singer/songwriter Foy Vance
has released “If Christopher Calls”
, the fourth track off his forthcoming album Signs Of Life. The song is available to stream and download starting today HERE
. Signs Of Life is due for release on September 10, and is available for pre-order now HERE
. The album marks Vance’s second LP on Ed Sheeran’s Gingerbread Man Records/Elektra Records and follows 2016’s critically acclaimed The Wild Swan.
Vance will celebrate Signs Of Life’s arrival with An Evening With Foy Vance, an intimate tour of the UK and US, including stops in Los Angeles, New York, and Nashville’s famed Ryman Auditorium. Remaining tickets for the largely sold-out run of shows are available now HERE
Written for his wife about her late father, “If Christopher Calls” is at once beautiful yet quietly devastating. Over a gorgeous, swelling melody Vance delivers a restrained yet palpably emotional vocal. “Christopher was Marie, my wife’s father, who passed away suddenly a few years back,” Vance explains. “When it happened, Marie was in London and I was in Scotland. Her mum had phoned her to say Christopher had dropped in the kitchen but they weren’t sure if he was dead. Marie wasn’t there, she was a few miles away and just talking to her mum on the phone, trying to tell her what to do.”
“Marie then called me and when she explained the situation it was clear to me that he was already dead. But she was still holding out hope that he would be alive when she got there, and I let her think that, rather than tell her what I was certain to be true. And it was. He died immediately. Her hope of hearing his voice again was heartbreaking,” Vance recalls. “She then came to Nashville with me while I was recording an album, and every day we would wake in the morning then go and sit out the back with a coffee, and that is where I would leave her – and that is where I would find her when I got home.”
“If Christopher Calls” follows Signs of Life’s previously released tracks “Time Stand Still”
, “Signs Of Life”
, and “Sapling”
. Upon its release, The New York Times featured “Sapling” in The Playlist and Clash Music applauded the song as “An instant fan favorite a song about renewal and survival.” The album’s early tracks have received additional praise from Entertainment Tonight, Americana UK, and more.
Signs Of Life was recorded in three locations: Vance’s Pilgrim studio at home on the shores of Loch Tay in Highland Perthshire, another recording set-up in a nearby Dunvarlich House, and at Plan B’s Kings X studio in London. The album was written and played more or less entirely by Vance, with assistance from young Northern Irish producer Gareth Dunlop. Serendipitously, Dunlop had been inspired on his career path by a chance encounter with Vance in a coffee shop 18 years ago.
Created out of the grimness of 2020, Signs of Life is an album of dawn after darkness, hope after despair, engagement after isolation, uplift after lockdown. The album’s bold artwork reflects Vance’s desire to embrace all sides of everything, all humanity’s textures. Shot on a 160-year-old camera, the back image is of Vance as a bare-chested, bare-knuckle boxer. On the front, he’s in a dress, blonde wig and theatrical make-up. “They’re just mad, striking images, and I loved the fact that it was male and female. You know, life’s extreme, life’s volatile, life explodes into reality sometimes, and stops just as quick. So to be struck by images on the cover made sense.”
Commenting on the album’s timely subject matter, Vance shared, “Signs of Life is about re-emergence me in my own soft revolution, the world re-emerging in what we’re about to see as we hopefully go back to some semblance of normality. But just life in general flowers growing through the cracks in Chernobyl. Life finds a way, doesn’t it?”