Photo: Sophie J Stafford

Keeley Forsyth floats in mental purgatory on the haunting “Wash”

Keeley Forsyth is releasing her new album Limbs next Friday, February 25, and following on from “Bring Me Water” and “I Stand Alone” she’s today shared a final single and video called “Wash”. It features exemplary percussive work from Evelyn Glennie, and Forsyth says:

“Evelyn’s work with the serpent cymbal, produced a unique, mournful, metallic sigh that colours the whole track. With the vocal, I wanted to open my throat and swallow that emotion. The lyrics came with this process, instinctive and impulsive.”

First listening to “Wash” I was certain that those sounds that fill the aural canvas were power drills, but, as seen in this video, it turns out it’s Evelyn using a bow against the edge of the serpent cymbal to create that sound that Forsyth perfectly describes as a “unique, mournful, metallic sigh”. It’s unsettling, uncomfortable and a perfect way to augment this song, bringing the ghosts of Forsyth’s regrets and memories into stark, scary reality. Her voice is yawningly bold over the minimalist soundscape, but it feels like she’s frozen to the spot as she sings, unable to move from fright – maybe because she’s worried she might get hurt, maybe because she worries that if she scares the past away, she’ll be left in her cold, isolated present.

“Wash” also comes with a video made in collaboration with Ross Downes and Neil Cain, Forsyth saying: “The video takes place in an absurdist purgatory, which exists with its own logic and where a confrontational high stakes game is playing out. This is directly in homage to the work of Irish playwright Samuel Beckett, where the protagonist is caught in a situation not fully understood or explainable.”

Watch the clip below or listen to “Wash” on streaming platforms.

Keeley Forsyth’s Limbs is coming out on February 25 through The Leaf Label (pre-order/save). Find Keeley Forsyth on Bandcamp, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.