Taken from I’m Kingfisher’s new album The Past Has Begun, out October 9 via Fading Trails Recordings.
For his seventh record The Past Has Begun” Thomas Jonsson is going back to his roots. It’s out on October 9th 2020 via Fading Trails Recordings. His last album – Transit, his third under his I’m Kingfisher moniker – met with some of the strongest reviews of his career and was featured on both NPR’s All Songs Considered and KEXP’s Song of the Day, but by 2016, he’d encountered a familiar foe – writer’s block. “I couldn’t really come up with anything new, and I didn’t know where I was going or what to expect,” he recalls. “And then, it just happened again, like it always does.”
This time, though, he used a different set of tools to break through the wall. Having nurtured his signature indie folk sound over the course of the first three I’m Kingfisher LPs, two records in particular inspired him to try his hand at something new. “When I first started out, in the early 2000s, I listened to a lot of country and Americana, but that kind of fell away,” he remembers. “Recently, though, I’d been touring a little bit more with those kinds of artists, and then I fell in love with Courtney Marie Andrews’ Honest Life and Dwight Yoakam’s Second Hand Heart.
They really hit a nerve, and I wanted to pursue that style for myself.” Not that it was all plain sailing; the first of the new tracks, ‘Captain, I’m Going Blind’, proved a tough nut to crack. Once Jonsson had it in the can, though, he spent much of 2018 compiling material for what would become The Past Has Begun. It’s his most impressive, cohesive collection yet, thirteen quietly epic tracks that showcase his remarkable versatility as a songwriter. Recorded with long-time collaborator producer Carl Edlom in his Karlstad studio, the album features guest vocals from Amanda Werne of Slowgold as well as Vilma Flood, whilst Josh Gordon – best known for his extensive work with Damien Jurado – contributed guitar parts, mellotron and keyboard remotely from the U.S.
That’s the record in a nutshell; romantic yet resigned, hopeful but drenched in melancholy. “I know that some parts of my life are done, and that the past has become an entity of its own. I find myself yearning for the feeling of being younger, and thinking everything was possible. Instead, I think you have to find the balance between wishing you’d done more, and being happy with what you’ve achieved.” For Jonsson, the past has begun.