The album documents the breakdown of a fictional couple’s marriage, and “Chase It Down” opens at the onset of their disintegrating relationship, with Gillespie’s husband singing, “I don’t even love you any more.”
As the duo noted when Utopian Ashes was announced, the album is inspired by the country soul sound heard in the duets of Gram Parsons with Emmylou Harris and George Jones and Tammy Wynette.
“In the same way you create characters for a novel, we’ve created characters here,” Beth said in a statement. “But you put yourself in it because you’re trying to understand the human situation. The singing has to be authentic. That’s all that matters.”
Gillespie added: “When you write a song you marry the personal with the fictional and make art. I was thinking about two people living alone, together but apart, existing and suffering in a psychic malaise, who plow on because of responsibilities and commitments. It’s about the impermanence of everything — an existential fact that everyone has to face at some point in their lives.”
Beth and Gillespie previously shared “Remember We Were Lovers” from Utopian Ashes, due out July 2nd via Third Man Records. The album is available to preorder now.