Rising US singer-songwriter Alexandra Savior has told NME how she came up with new track ‘Shades’, a collaboration with Arctic Monkeys man Alex Turner and co-producer James Ford.
The track, which went online last week, was recorded during sessions for Savior’s forthcoming debut album (as yet untitled) in LA over the past year. Describing ‘Shades’, which is every bit as sultry as Turner’s recent material with Arctic Monkeys and Last Shadow Puppets, Savior said: “It was one of the last songs we wrote for the record, [and] came about more humorously than the others. We were desperate for an upbeat song and indulging in our single lives.”
She also painted a picture of the team’s minimal studio setup: “It was just us three, a wizard engineer by the name of Michael Harris, and occasionally bassist Zach Dawes. Alex played guitar and some bass because my playing is at an elementary level to say the least, and James played keys and rocked out hard on the drums. We'd sit together to try and find precious tones, and for a few of the solos I would sing into a synth or filtered mic and Al or James would mimic the melody.”
Ford, she added, “helped keep [in] some little knick-knacks, like screams and boings and begging and pleading, without confusing the listener or making me seem like I belong in a madhouse”.
Asked if there were ever any nerves while recording around the likes of Turner, Savior told us: “I did feel nervous the first week in the studio, not because of those big shots, but more with a feeling that I may suggest something irrelevant or detrimental because I had never recorded a record properly. But as I became more comfortable I was puppeteering James more than he preferred, I’m sure.”
Listen to ‘Shades’ below, and read our article about how Savior came to work with Turner and Ford.