Creative inspiration isn’t something that can be easily planned in advance, and on dewy new single “Late Riser” Nashville pop duo Frances Cone make a persuasive argument for keeping life as unhurried as possible.
Band members Christina Cone and Andrew Doherty know a thing or two about taking their time: Late Riser is the long-awaited follow-up to Frances Cone’s debut LP, Come Back, which was released in 2013. A cross between the pop balladry of Taylor Swift and ethereal flutterings of Bon Iver, the title track smolders through stripped-down verses before reaching the billowing harmonies of the chorus — but its peaceful soundscapes got their start in the bustle of the New York City subway.
“Time is messy and more generous than we’re conditioned to believe. I wrote the chorus of this song on the G train in Brooklyn, but the verses came together this summer and we ended up driving to Nashville at the end of the trip to record it,” Cone tells Rolling Stone Country about “Late Riser.” The band is now based full-time in Music City.
The trip that Cone and Doherty took (they’re also a couple) was a summer-long adventure of “aimlessly [driving] across the country.” “We camped the whole time and kept arriving at the campsites after dark, so I never really knew where we were until the sun came up in the morning,” Cone recalls. “Unzipping a tent to see Lake Powell, or the woodlands of Minnesota or canyons in Utah well after everyone else had cleared up the campsite almost perfectly encapsulates how I appreciate the world.”
Late Riser itself has had a slow reveal, with its first single, “Arizona,” getting its premiere three years ago in January 2016. The new album is Doherty’s first full-length as a member of the group — he joined prior to 2014’s self-titled EP — and sees the pair collaborate with Josh Kaler and Lucius member Dan Molad, who produced Come Back. Album opener “Wide Awake” was also premiered last fall.
Frances Cone release Late Riser on January 18th via Living Daylight Records and Thirty Tigers.