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Whitney announce debut LP Light Upon The Lake alongside glorious new single “Golden Days”

23 March 2016, 14:58 | Written by George O'Brien

Very occasionally a song appears that stops you in your tracks. Something with the emotional connection to cut through the incredible volume of music we are all subjected to on a daily basis, leaving you simultaneously mystified and overjoyed. Whitney were, and continue to be, responsible for these special moments.

“No Woman” emerged in January, and the Chicago outfit - formed by guitarist Max Kakacek (ex-Smith Westerns) and vocalist / drummer Julien Ehrlich (ex-Unknown Mortal Orchestra) - had arrived. From its dreamy keyboard opening, through joyous trumpet lines and warm swathes of strings, it provided a perfect introduction to the wonderful world of Whitney.

Today the group reveal “Golden Days”, a second, gloriously heartwarming taste of their debut full length Light Upon The Lake, due 3 June via Secretly Canadian. Once again Ehrlich’s unique vocal spins a stunning, nostalgic yarn, weighed down by an underlying melancholy and yet bursting with hope as the track reaches its euphoric, sing-along climax.

And it is this juxtaposition that Whitney do so well. Recorded with Foxygen frontman Jonathan Rado in the un-rock n’ roll San Fernando Valley in California, Light Upon The Lake is the culmination of a short but intense period of creativity for the talented two, leaning on each other as they both battled with breakups that ultimately provided suitably traditional inspiration for the album. Humanity and hopefulness is married with an unavoidable sadness that lingers throughout, despite Whitney’s smile-inducing knack for classic, wholly satisfying songwriting.

“Golden Days” highlights this beautifully relatable emotional struggle: “Oh don’t you save me from hanging on / I tell myself what we had is gone,” Ehrlich pines with isolation and loneliness, feelings the pair decided to personify, resulting in the band name.

Says Kakacek, “We were both writing as this one character, and whenever we were stuck, we’d ask, ‘What would Whitney do in this situation?’ We wrote the record as though one person were playing everything. We purposefully didn’t add a lot of parts and didn’t bother making everything perfect, because the character we had in mind wouldn’t do that.”

Light Upon The Lake is their classic, feeling as if it could have been composed any time in the last fifty years, it sends a subdued smile back to the creative pool of Laurel Canyon, to Neil Young’s ranch or The Band’s Malibu hideout. It is somehow as genuine and reminiscent as it is entirely refreshing and completely essential.

It’s another special moment from a very special new band; Whitney’s “Golden Days” are truly ahead of them.

Light Upon The Lake is out 3 June via Secretly Canadian.

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