Sound & Vision With Ailbhe Reddy

On her new album, Endless Affair, Ireland’s Ailbhe Reddy may be looking at her formative years in the rear view mirror, but she has lost none of her youthful abandon. It is a record that sizzles with the memory of hedonism and heartache, pairing despair with hilarity and disapproving glances, to present a set of songs that are memorable, resonant, and more importantly a whole lot of fun. We may be products of our past, but we are not defined by them, and Reddy takes the rough with the smooth in making sense of how she has got to where she is.

Here, we hear about the Sound & Vision picks that have accompanied her on this journey:

Three favourite albums:

Fiona Apple – When The Pawn

One of my favourites. I remember discovering this record in my early twenties and feeling like it was written for me.  I just related to it so much. Fiona Apple is an incredible artist. Paper Bag, Fast as You Can and Love Ridden soundtracked so much of my life. There is so much to unpack lyrically and sonically. 

Andy Shauf – The Neon Skyline

I love that Shauf writes true concept albums, character studies.  This album is about the main character going to his local bar only to discover his ex-girlfriend Judy is back in town and they end up on a night out together.  It’s cinematic in a way.  At some points we’re in the present moment with him, as he describes giving ‘a silent toast to the things I do and do not miss’, in other songs we hear him reminisce over arguments they had, or central events from their relationship (like in Thirteen Hours which details Judy being hit by a car on their way home from the airport and blaming him for the accident, because he was a cheap bastard who didn’t tip the cab driver enough). There’s such detail.  By the end of the record you feel like you know these characters and the intimate details of their relationship, you also feel like you have some closure on it. 

Julia Jackson – Crushing

Absolutely adore this record, Don’t Know How to Keep Loving You is the best break up song of the last decade in my books! And Body, the opening track is a heartbreakingly beautiful song about the anxiety surrounding a relationship on its last legs. No longer trusting her boyfriend she asks ‘do you still have that photograph? Would you use it to hurt me?’

Favourite film:

Magnolia – Paul Thomas Anderson

Incredible soundtrack written by Aimee Mann, incredible script by PTA, incredible performances by Julianne Moore, Philip Seymor Hoffman, John C Reilly and Tom Cruise. 

A song that means a lot to you:

Billy Joel – She’s Always A Woman

I went for one that is beautiful and nostalgic for me. I listened to this album a lot in my mum’s car when I was a kid and still listen to it every once in a while.  This song has to be one of the most romantic songs I know.

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