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Bird Machine is the forthcoming posthumous album from Sparklehorse

13 June 2023, 14:46 | Written by Tyler Damara Kelly

In celebration of today’s announce the song "Evening Star Supercharger" has been released, featuring art and handwritten lyrics by Mark Linkous.

Sparklehorse’s Mark Linkous began work on what he planned to be the fifth Sparklehorse album in 2009. With his younger brother Matt, the two of them would talk through his plans for the record. He continued to work on his fifth album, recording with Steve Albini in Chicago, and in front of his beloved 1968 Flickinger mixing console at his Static King studio, whilst the depression which had shadowed him for many years began to deepen. On 6 March of 2010 he died by suicide at the age of 48.

Several years later when Matt, Melissa and Bryan Hoffa, an audio preservation specialist at the Library of Congress’ National Audio-Visual Conservation Centre, began the painstaking process of listening to and archiving Mark’s recordings, they found the ideas that Mark had discussed with Matt had been vividly and powerfully achieved. A number of the songs were close to completion, while others needed only careful encouragement – the addition of subtle instrumentation and accompanying vocals in some cases, another careful mix in others – to take flight. "It was as though the songs let you know", says Melissa. "Mark communicated these songs. We just did our best to transmit them."

"It’s the hardest decision I’ve ever made", says Matt. "It’s difficult making a choice about someone else’s art, even if you’ve known them all your life and worked with them, even if they were your brother and best friend. We had long conversations about not wanting to take this into a different direction. We wanted to bring out what was there."

Matt and Melissa were able to work with a team of musicians - including Alan Weatherhead, who produced Bird Machine with Matt and Melissa, Joel Hamilton who mixed the record, and Greg Calbi, who jointly mastered the final version – who had worked with Sparklehorse and cared deeply for Mark.

"It means so much to me, this last batch of beautiful stuff that my brother was putting together," says Matt.


1. It Will Never Stop
2. Kind Ghosts
3. Evening Star Supercharger
4. O Child
5.Falling Down
6. I Fucked It Up
7. Hello Lord
8. Daddy’s Gone
9. Chaos of the Universe
10. Listening to the Higsons
11. Everybody’s Gone to Sleep
12. The Scull of Lucia
13. Blue
14. Stay

"Evening Star Supercharger" is out now. Sparklehorse's posthumous album, Bird Machine, arrives on 8 September via ANTI- and is available to pre-order now.

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