OLIVIA DEAN DEBUT ALBUM MESSY OUT NOW
WATCH BEAUTIFUL LIVE VIDEO FOR TITLE TRACK "MESSY"
Hi-res assets here // Photo credit: PETROS
Praise for Olivia Dean:
"Her 12-track record navigates falling out of love and back into it, with comforting, conversational lyrics all articulated in the warm, glowy tones of her full-bodied voice." - The Independent
“the capital’s most exciting new star” - Evening Standard
“an album that ultimately underscores Dean's long-term potential” - Rolling Stone UK
"a record that sees Dean explore family ties, healthy love and “not getting too hung up on being the best version of yourself”. It’s authentically Olivia Dean from start to finish, mess and all." - NME
“delivered by her silken vocals draped over tender, soul-filled production in a way that could both break and mend hearts.” - Dazed
"every inch a pop star about to break" - Music Week
"Dean has become renowned for her feel-good ballads, amassing an impressive amount of fans in the process" - The Face
“Dean’s songs are self-love singles that empower young women. Her relatable internetisms, compelling storytelling and powerhouse pop vocals come with just the right amount of tongue-in-cheek humour.” - ELLE
30 JUNE 2023 (TORONTO, ON) — Fast rising UK soul-pop star Olivia Dean today releases her long-awaited and highly anticipated debut album Messy via EMI/Universal Music Canada. Featuring the singles "Dive", "Danger", "UFO", "Carmen", "The Hardest Part" (with Olivia recently sharing a special new version featuring Leon Bridges) Olivia Dean’s debut album Messy cements her as one of the most original and versatile voices in UK pop. Crafting classic yet conversational hooks with genre-fluid tinges, she’s honed a way of exploring universal themes of love, loss and everything in between with razor-sharp but open-hearted storytelling.
Of the making of Messy, Olivia shares: “Going into making the record, I'd just done this ‘Growth’ project. And for ages, I was like, well, my debut album needs to be what I've grown into, I need to have the answer. And that really confused me for a while. Then I realised, I'm always going to be growing. So this doesn't have to be a destination, it's just where I’m at now… It's funny because I think it’s the most fine-tuned I've got my sound to be, but also the most carefree I've been in actually making music… some of it’s quite vulnerable but it was just made out of pure fun and joy and unbotheredness.”
Today Olivia also shares an intimate handheld captured live performance of the album’s title track "Messy", which showcases Olivia’s rich vocals and intimate songwriting. It was shot by Olivia’s close friend Sirus Gahan at sunset in a field in South London with her band.
Following a triumphant weekend at Glastonbury festival - where she met Elton John, a continued champion of hers who said "I think she’s a big star … she’s a fabulous singer, she’s beautiful, she’s got that personality that really shines through" - and her first, sold out US headline show Olivia embarks on a run of intimate acoustic performances, signings and Q&As across the UK, plus two celebratory release day shows at London’s Scala today.
Tickets are available here. This summer sees Dean headline a sold out show at London’s Somerset House on Tuesday 11th July for the Summer Series with American Express, and play festivals including All Points East, Montreux Jazz Festival, Barn on the Farm and more. For full tour updates and itinerary, visit oliviadeano.com.
Getting There (Interlude)
The Hardest Part
I Could Be A Florist
With Olivia Dean’s debut album Messy, we gain a refreshingly textured snapshot of a young woman embracing the beauty in freedom and acceptance: of life, of love, of mess. On it Olivia’s signature soul-bearing lyricism joins forces with some of her most expansive and varied production to date, all bolstered by a newfound determination to defy any categorization except her own.
Whether it’s the tension she felt in figuring out what space she wanted to occupy musically, or the logistical mayhem of actually producing such a big body of work, or just the everyday cacophony of life and feelings, Messy is a punchy and unexpected debut exploring a wealth of sounds, influences and styles. “Even with the sonics of the record, I’ve left a lot of sound in there, of talking, of the piano pedals. I like that it sounds human. On the title track, there’s a layer of me doing mouth trumpet sounds that was just meant to be a placeholder and I was like let’s just keep it! There’s no rules!” she laughs. “I tried to just expel people's voices from my mind about what I was supposed to make or what would be cool or what would be the most successful thing for me to make and made stuff that I want to listen to.” The project ushers you seamlessly through a patchwork of different atmospheres, gathered together into beautifully organised chaos. At times it’s jazz-filled, at others futuristic, pared back and intimate in moments then playfully bold in the ones that follow. “There's a vocoder and guitar Imogen Heap-thing and then there's Motown Diana Ross-mode. And the last song’s this kind of orchestral thing. It’s just a whole mix. Because why not? I feel like this album is a big fuck you to genre,” Dean says with a laugh.
Elsewhere, she’s been invigorated by her travels outside of the UK, visiting Grenada and Brazil within the last 18 months while writing. The former reminded her to conjure joy in her music too, “to make sure I have some songs on this record that are a joy to perform, that give me the opportunity to have fun and dance,” while the latter introduced her to a whole new perspective on music. “There’s this genre called MBP that’s all old Brazillian music. And I was told it’s something that you listen to with your loved ones and by yourself. It’s really cherished in the culture as romantic music for special moments. And like, what is the English equivalent of that? Of a really cherished genre that’s our special thing or for our quietest moments. And I thought, I want to make that! I want to make music that's for your special times, to soothe you, to attach to beautiful memories that you have.” In many ways, that is precisely what Messy is and will go on to be for many - something to be cherished, shared and relished in. And in the same vein, the process of making it served a similar role for Olivia too: “I’m not a religious person but I would say [making music] is the closest thing I have to any sort of spirituality.”
About Olivia Dean
Born and raised in Walthamstow, Olivia Dean is one the UK’s brightest rising stars, praised for her endearing, down-to-earth lyrics and magnetic, feel-good live performances. To date, Dean has released three acclaimed EPs Ok Love You Bye, What Am I Gonna Do On Sundays? and Growth and in 2021 achieved her first top 20 single with her cover of "The Christmas Song", recorded for Amazon Originals.
Since 2019 Olivia has been gathering fans apace, now with over 5 million monthly listeners globally, and she was streamed over 150 million times in 2022 alone. She has supporters across BBC Radio 1, Beats 1, The Guardian, Sunday Times Style, Dazed, The FADER, NME, ELLE, gal-dem, Vanity Fair, Clash and more tipping her for greatness. She has become a regular feature at fashion week, is a Chanel ambassador and has starred on the cover of fashion titles from Wonderland to Puss Puss.
During the pandemic, Dean connected with fans by performing from the side of her bright yellow truck, which she toured in offering free shows to communities around the UK. Her first official gig back at the Camden Jazz Cafe sold out instantly and went on to be watched over 7 million times after it went viral on Tiktok. 2023 is set to be Olivia’s biggest year to date, with the release of her debut album and her biggest shows to date.
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