HomeMusicBig Thief share raw, emotional new single 'Certainty'

Big Thief share raw, emotional new single ‘Certainty’

Big Thief have shared another new single called “Certainty.”

The raw, emotional new single follows the previously released “Little Things” and “Sparrow.” Revolving around dreamy guitars and twangy vocal lines, “Certainty” sees Big Thief at their folkiest. Frontwoman Adrianne Lenker delivers poetic lyrics. The track features delicate harmonies from Hannah Cohen. Big Thief wrote and recorded the song directly to four track during a three-day power outage at Sam Evian’s Flying Cloud Studios.

“On the third day of the outage, I found Adrianne on the porch writing a new song, so I sat with her and we finished it together, with the rain falling from the gutters splashing over our guitars,” the band’s Buck Meek explains. “James and Sam saw us writing, and quickly set up a four-track tape machine in the kitchen, powered by the F250 cigarette lighter out in the yard. They set up the drums by the sink, and Max plugged his bass into a Bluetooth speaker set on top of the stove. Take 2 had a great bark from Sam and Hannah’s pup Jan during the solo, but we ended up going with take 3 because it took us about that long to learn the chords. Then we made pancakes and sausages and ate breakfast for dinner.”

Listen to “Certainty” below.

The previously released “Little Things” and “Sparrow” sees Big Thief exploring new sonic territory. Drummer James Krivchenia produced both tracks. Unlike on “Certainty,” “Little Things” sees Big Thief singing of uncertainty. Throughout the track, frontwoman Adrianne Lenker reaches out to a nameless lover, with lyrics like, “Maybe I’m a little obsessed. / Maybe you do use me.”

“It’s in this sort of evolving free time signature where the beat is always changing,” Krivchenia explains. “So Max [Oleartchik, bassist] and I were just flowing with it and guessing where the downbeats were – which gives the groove a really cool light feeling.”

“Sparrow,” on the other hand, was recorded later in the year in July and August of 2020 with Sam Evian at Flying Cloud Recordings. This tune is much more contemplative and poetic than “Little Things. With no chorus, “Sparrow” develops a sort of foreboding feeling that really adds to the tune. Big Thief channel an almost hymnal sound beneath the melancholic instrumentals.

Revisit “Little Things” and “Sparrow” here.

Lead photo courtesy of Alexa Viscius.

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