Jehnny Beth has unveiled a haunting new single, “Innocence.” The track appears on the French musician’s upcoming solo debut, To Love Is to Live, out June 12th.
Directed by Andreas Neumann, the clip features footage of Beth rehearsing for her set at the BBC 6 Music Festival last month. The song’s lyrics are eerily timely amid the current pandemic: “Be thankful for the air you breathe/the roof over your head/and the light that comes in.”
“A lot of the things I tried to convey in the album resonate strongly today, sometimes as if premonitory,” Beth wrote on her Instagram. “‘Innocence’ is about the feeling of isolation I have felt many times in big cities while living so close to people and yet feeling so distant.”
“I think this album coming out at this moment will feel important, maybe even comforting,” she continued. “Obviously we couldn’t shoot a video during lockdown, but luckily we had filmed some beautiful footage at rehearsal and will share that with you. A gig without an audience. Or more exactly a gig with a virtual audience…you.”
“Innocence” follows the lead single “I’m the Man” and “Flower.” To Love Is To Live was produced by Flood — known for his work with U2, Nine Inch Nails and New Order — who recently produced Radiohead’s Ed O’Brien’s solo debut, Earth.
Beth originally planned to release To Love Is To Live on May 8th, but the record was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Beth wanted to support independent record stores by ensuring her album would be available when they reopen.
“Record stores are where I found myself as a teenager, digging through albums that ultimately shaped who I have become,” she said. “To release my first ever solo album in a way that would leave them out felt wrong to me; luckily, we were able to find a date that would allow us to release the physical and digital album at the same time.”