Angel Olsen Shares New Song “Waving, Smiling” and Live Performance Video | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Monday, October 26th, 2020  

Angel Olsen Shares New Song “Waving, Smiling” and Live Performance Video

Whole New Mess Due Out August 28 via Jajaguwar

Aug 18, 2020 Photography by Kylie Coutts
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A few weeks ago Angel Olsen announced a new album, Whole New Mess, and shared its first single, title track “Whole New Mess,” via a video for it. Now she’s back with another single, “Waving, Smiling.” She’s also shared a video of her performing the song live from Asheville’s Masonic Temple. Check out both the song and live video below.

“‘Waving, Smiling’ in my head is the last scene, a slow motion realization of love not lost but at peace somewhere within myself,” says Olsen in a press release. “It’s the bittersweet end of a chapter of my life—it is the final acceptance that despite coming to an end all of that time was not lost or wasted.”

“Whole New Mess” was one of our Songs of the Week. At the end of July, Olsen performed “Whole New Mess” on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.” Check out the performance here.

The album mainly features stripped down versions of the songs found on last year’s acclaimed All Mirrors album, but also features two new songs (“Whole New Mess” and “Waving, Smiling”). While Whole New Mess was recorded before All Mirrors, these are not demos for that album; Olsen purposefully recorded two versions of these songs, always intending to release them separately. Olsen has also announced that on release day she will be doing the third concert in her Cosmic Streams livestream series, performing from the Hazel Robinson Amphitheater in her current hometown of Asheville, NC. 

With the aid of audio engineer Michael Harris, Olsen went to a studio in the small town of Anacortes, Washington called The Unknown, in search of a space where, as she puts it in a press release, “vulnerability exists.” The Unknown is a former Catholic church converted by Mount Eerie’s Phil Elverum and producer Nicholas Wilbur. “I hadn’t been to The Unknown, but I knew about its energy. I wanted to go sit with the material and be with it in a way that felt like a residency,” Olsen says in a press release. “I didn’t need a lot, since it was just me and a guitar. But I wanted someone else there to hold me accountable for trying different things.”

Olsen also had this to say about the themes of the album: “I had gone through this breakup, but it was so much bigger than that—I’d lost friendships, too. When you get out of a relationship, you have to examine who you are or were in all the relationships. I wanted to record when I was still processing these feelings. These are the personal takes, encapsulated in a moment.” 

All Mirrors was our #1 Album of 2019. It also our Album of the Week and we previously posted a rave 9/10 review of the album

Also, don’t forget that Olsen was on the cover of our last print issue, the My Favorite Album Issue (you can still buy a copy directly from us here). 

Since All Mirrors release Olsen has kept busy. 

In March Olsen covered Roxy Music’s “More Than This” and posted it to her Instagram account. The original was a hit from 1982’s Avalon

In April Olsen did a ticketed livestreamed concert, Still At Home: An Evening of Songs on Piano and Guitar, with proceeds going to benefit her touring band and road crew, as well as the MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Effort. 

In April Olsen also shared an at-home cover of Tori Amos’ “Winter.”

In April she shared a remix of “All Mirrors” by Johnny Jewel of Chromatics

In June she shared a remix of “New Love Cassette” by Mark Ronson

In July she hosted her second Cosmic Stream concert, which included her covering Tom Petty with Hand Habits.

Also read our 2016 interview with Olsen.

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