William Fitzsimmons – Ready the Astronaut (2021)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 40:12 minutes | 425 MB | Genre: Indie Folk, Indie Pop, Singer-Songwriter
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Gronland
Centering around the Icarus myth, William Fitzsimmons’ seventh album sees him debark on a slightly different sound aesthetic, yet still his distinctive voice holds it all together. For fans of Bon Iver, The National, Sufjan Stevens and Jose’ Gonzalez.
Over the course of his career, William Fitzsimmons has made his living writing a specific brand of honest and inward-looking folk songs that fearlessly and candidly examine the evolving self while dexterously communicating his talent for robust melodies and catchy instrumentation. That the subject matter tends to dwell on the darker parts of human existence and relationships is no coincidence. Now, Fitzsimmons is set to release Ready the Astronaut (out June 25 via Nettwerk Records) as a powerful testament to his own past, and by weaving his story through the familiar tale of Icarus, he illustrates his willingness to accept his life’s highs and lows by paying tribute to the influence they have on the future.
“I’ve always been fascinated by the astronaut thing,” he says. “When I was a kid, the idea of escaping my situation was attractive. Having disabled parents, being fat, being a band nerd, and made fun of on the bus every morning…I wanted to escape the corporeal realm, to escape my body and my family. The farthest you can get is putting on a spacesuit and getting the hell out of Dodge. Somewhere that was always in the back of my head. And at that moment in Nashville, at 41 years old and already through one divorce, I had thought this was the relationship that was gonna fix everything. And all of a sudden everything was happening all over again; I was right back to where I started, again. That was an overwhelmingly bad feeling and I just wanted to escape. The album was born out of wanting to not have to live over the same mistakes that I had made so many times already.”
Out today, the latest single “If I Fell Back To The Earth (You Will Never Find Me)” is about how anger is not a negative emotion. Righteous anger gives us the strength to seek justice. To not accept unfairness or wrongdoing.
Speaking with American Songwriter, Fitzsimmons says, “I felt like I was similar to the Icarus character because I made a lot of the same mistakes that he made in his life,” says Fitzsimmons. “So, I just started writing songs surrounding that theme. Mostly, the record is about going up, going down and trying to get back up, learning from your mistakes, but messing it up all over again.”
As part of the release, Fitzsimmons will be releasing a series of concept videos for each single that delve into the Icarus myth. Speaking about the video, William says, “‘Ready the Astronaut’ is built around the Icarus myth of ascension and descension; rising and falling. The attempt to achieve fulfillment but gloriously failing only to try again. The music videos are built around the same themes and are a perfect companion and elaboration on this story. The loneliness and isolation of the astronaut who, on his own, sets out on a voyage to a different land, only to continually fall back to the earth, his previous mistakes, fears, and failures meeting him on the ground. But he continues to get up, dust his wings off, and try to fly again.”
1. Dancing on the Sun (03:25)
2. No Promises (03:39)
3. Down with One Another (03:07)
4. Daedalus, My Father (04:01)
5. As Long as I Can Breathe (02:30)
6. Ready the Astronaut (04:26)
7. You Let Me Down (03:42)
8. Maybe She Will Change Her Mind (04:55)
9. If I Fell Back to the Earth (You Will Never Find Me) (03:11)
10. Icarus (04:23)
11. To Love Forever (02:53)