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Lily Kershaw & Joey Genetti

Thursday, March 05
Show | 8pm // Doors | 7:30pm

Advance $10 | Day of $12
Doors at 7:30 | Show at 8

Imagine the mind’s farthest wanderings made physical, formed into worlds that represent our internal and external expressions. Mythologically speaking, people have been naming this duality for ages: utopia and dystopia, heaven and earth, Olympus and the underworld. Now imagine this concept distilled in an eleven track, thirty-six minute album, and you arrive at Arcadia, the latest offering by songstress Lily Kershaw. Weaving warmer analog sounds like organ, harpsichord and guitar with cinematic force, Arcadia is Kershaw’s most intimate release to date. But the strongest tool Kershaw wields is her voice, both in the simmering ferocity it carries and the poetry it speaks. Though the concept behind the record is epic to say the least, Kershaw is ultimately telling a story of acceptance, both of herself and the great mystery that is the universe. “At the same time that I’m existing in existential crisis there’s also this part of me that is fully in acceptance of the reality of being alive and loves it.” she says. “That acceptance also allowed me to be more intimate. Whether people realize it or not, I feel like I’m revealing a lot.”


But the path to self-acceptance is not without its struggles. A self-described “compulsive songwriter,” Kershaw has been making music for most of her life. Constantly in the studio, Kershaw has released a record, an EP and a slew of singles over the last six years, including breakout hit “As it Seems.” But if there is anything she has gained with the release of each new record, it is trust. “I think initially when I was making music, I would go into the room and believe that whoever I was with knew better than me,” says Kershaw. “I’ve been writing music for so long and I’ve been recording music since I was seventeen-years-old and I’m twenty eight – that’s a lot of years. I’ve learned I need to trust my gut when I’m on to something.” That process of intuition was integral to the making of Arcadia. Partnering with producer and artist Ben Cooper, Kershaw notes that he “echoed very similar beliefs about life and creativity.” She continues, “as we walked into the studio, I realized that to work with him and to do it well would mean that the most important thing is that I be myself.”


It is fitting then, that listening to an inner voice was the catalyst for making the record: “At the beginning of the year, I got obsessed with the word Arcadia. It was looping in my brain, and as I was driving one day, it was just too loud. So I yelled out, ‘You want me to move to Arcadia!?’ And then I became really calm and some part of my brain said, ‘no it’s a record. Go make a record called Arcadia.'” As Kershaw began conceptualizing the world of Arcadia, its counterpart also took shape in the song “Myth of New York. “If Arcadia is the immortal, then ‘Myth of New York’ is the mortal,” she says. Hence, the record is divided into two worlds, with half the songs existing in the first world, and the other half in the latter. She describes her vision saying, “If the first half had imagery, it would be a lush idealistic place and the second half of the record would exist somewhere on the edges of a dystopic city that has fallen.” But think of it less like an album split in two, and more like the image of Ouroboros, the serpent devouring its own tail. Because, as Kershaw points out, both the first and last notes of the record are the same, presenting itself as an infinite loop. While this might sound esoteric, Kershaw presents snapshots of her psyche in terms we can all understand, like love, heartbreak and fear.