DINKED EXCLUSIVE 136
One Hand on The Steering Wheel The Other Sewing A Garden
Release Date Friday 8th October
All pre-orders will be dispatched/made ready for collection on that date.
2. Can’t Stop Me From Dying
5. Salt Spring
6. And My Newness...
7. My Love For Your Is Real
9. Writer In NY
one hand on the steering wheel the other sewing a garden is the name of the second album by Canadian songwriter
Alexandra Levy, publicly known by the moniker Ada Lea. On one hand, it’s a collection of walking-paced, cathartic
pop/folk songs, on the other it’s a book of heart-twisting, rear-view stories of city life. Ada Lea has followed up the
creative, indie-rock songcraft of her debut what we say in private with surprising arrangements and new perspectives.
The album is set in Montreal and each song exists as a dot on a personal history map of the city where Levy grew up.
Due on September 24th from Saddle Creek and Next Door Records in Canada, the physical record will be released
alongside a map of song locations and a songbook with chords and lyrics, inspired by Levy’s love of real book
Levy penned and demoed this batch of songs in an artist residency in Banff, Alberta. After sorting and editing she made
her way to Los Angeles to record with producer/engineer Marshall Vore (Phoebe Bridgers) who had previously worked
on 2020’s woman, here E.P. After a long walk to the studio each morning, Levy spent her session days diving into the
arrangements, playfully letting everything fall in place with complete trust for her collaborators. She notes “Marshall’s
expertise and experience with drumming and songwriting was the perfect blend for what the songs needed. He was
able to support me in a harmonic, lyrical, and rhythmic sense.” Other contributors that left a notable fingerprint on the
soundscape include drummer Tasy Hudson, guitarist Harrison Whitford (of Phoebe Bridgers band), and mixing
engineer Burke Reid (Courtney Barnett). Many songs came together with a blend of studio tracks and elements from
the pre-recorded demos.
The resulting sounds range from classic, soft-rock beauty to intimate finger-picked folk passages and night-drive
art-pop. And the textures are frequently surprising due to the collage of lo-fi and hi-fi sounds that tastefully decorate
the album without ever clouding the heart-center of the song. Tracks like “damn” and “oranges” feel timeless with their
AM gold groove and 70’s studio sheen, while songs like “my love 4 u is real '', “salt spring” and “can’t stop me from dying”
sound completely modern in their use of electronics, sound effects, and pitched vocals. In their subtle, sonic variety, all
of the album’s songs flow together with ease into one big, romantic dream for Levy’s silken vocals to float above.
Inspired by personal experience, daydreams, and Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels, the lyrics of one hand... center
storytelling on a bigger scale. The experience and emotions of a year are communicated through Levy’s vignettes of
city life. Her prose is centered in its setting of the St Denis area of Montreal as it draws up memories from local haunts
like Fameux, La Rockette, and Quai des Brumes in rearview reverie. Levy creates a balance through the album’s year by
splitting her songs evenly into four seasons. Opening track “damn”, as a song of winter, kicks off the narrative with the
events of a cursed New Year’s Eve party. Immediately this timeline becomes jumbled into a Proustian haziness. The
listener is then led through the heat-stricken, brain fog of Summer song, “can’t stop me from dying” and then into the
autumnal romanticism of “oranges” before returning back to New Year’s on “partner,” which Levy describes as “a woozy
late-night taxi blues reflection on moments when timing can be so right, yet so wrong…”. These collected stories as a
whole chart the unavoidable growth that comes with experience. “All is fo
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