On a farm in central Germany, with a small backpack and a dead cell phone, Sam Lynch found herself in a damp cellar, sitting in front of an out-of-tune piano. It was the beginning of a story shared by many: in the wake of a major life shift, Lynch followed the impulse to throw everything familiar out the window and lean into the free-fall of uncertainty. She quit her jobs, gave away most of her belongings, and set out to travel solo. Yet, in the midst of this relatively unextraordinary story, a quiet, extraordinary shift occurred; upon returning from a five-month independent journey through Europe in 2016, Lynch finally surrendered to the magnetic musical pull that she had been resisting for so many years.
Based in Vancouver, Lynch has been evolving and expanding her relationship with music for quite some time. She started writing songs at a very young age as a way of processing the world around her; “I’m not sure if I would even call them songs”, says Lynch, “more along the lines of pure unadulterated preteen emotion”. But since then, Lynch has worked to distill the emotions that are experienced across generations, and shed light on the simple stories that have the ability to be profoundly moving. “Most of my songs are built around a moment—either a specific real-life moment that elicits a strong emotional response, or a musical moment that emerges from free-form playing, or a lyrical tidbit that stirs some other part of my brain,” Lynch explains. “Then things tend to feel like a bit of a tornado— lots of ideas spinning around, often very loose and hard to grab on to—and I just try to capture as much as I can in the moment.” She has pushed through the slight discomfort that often accompanies vulnerability and channeled those feelings into an expansive collection of songs for her upcoming LP—some of which were recorded in her basement, others recorded in world-renowned studios in Montréal alongside producer Sam Woywitka.
The lush new songs, mixed by Robbie Lackritz (Feist / Bahamas), are an ode to self-discovery and to the subtle-yet profound moments of life. Along with Woywitka (Chin Injeti / Echlo), Lynch was joined by Isaac Symonds and Dylan Phillips of Half Moon Run, Mishka Stein (Patrick Watson), and Volodia Schneider (Aliocha) for instrumentation and arrangements, as well as Leif Vollebekk for key piano parts on a few songs. The result is an unpredictable, vulnerable, strident and sincere album, built upon strong lyricism and dynamic, experimental instrumentation. As Lynch says about the new songs – “if I get goosebumps, tingly in my legs, tight in my chest, or my stomach drops, I feel like things are working.”