This article originally appeared in the Metro Herald on November 19th 2012.
A mere glance at Julie Feeney’s CV is enough to leave the most accomplished of sorts feeling inadequate. Julie’s unrelenting passion has seen her check into nearly every stop along the musical spectrum. And be it as a conductor, musician, vocalist or poet, all have been delivered by way of her unique avant-garde style.
Having won the inaugural Choice Music Prize with her 2005 debut 13 Songs, the enigmatic Galway girl followed it up with the equally enthralling pages and has barely paused for breath since. “I can’t believe I’m here talking to you about this” she says, surveying the first pressings of her latest release, Clocks. A career high, it’s a delight of an album, with her trademark eccentricity balanced by assured song writing, not least on the delightfully buoyant opener Dear John.
Crucial to the process this time was a new creative approach. “With the last album I did the signing at the end, meaning there was a lot of time to reflect on it,” Julie reveals. “I wanted to get a particular kind of emotion across. It was quite hard to let the space in but as soon as the essence hit I felt a draw to my ancestors. I went to Kylemore Abbey in Galway and sang my heart out.”
The changes were also rung financially, as having previously relied on bank loans; she decided to turn to Fund It – the Irish crowd-funding platform. Julie describes what followed as “bonkers”, with the €23,000 raised making Clocks the site’s most successful musical venture yet. Though extremely grateful for the contributions, she is also quick to dispel any notions of an easy ride. “There was still a lot of work still involved. You’re very grateful but you don’t want to break the magic of the actual toil that you go through – the slavery, the working through the night”. Similarly, she felt no pressure in rushing the end-product. “People who are kind enough and amazing enough to fund it know that you need to make the best album you can make”.