After finding huge support for her recent offerings “Fan Favourite” and “Release Myself” in recent weeks, Brighton-based artist Bess Atwell continues the support for her next LP ‘Light Sleeper’ with the warming new single “Something Now”.

With its rich and emotive textures perfectly heightening her dazzling vocals once again, “Something Now” adds another refined layer to her already immersive efforts of late. Building upon the shimmering presence of her recent releases to develop a warmer and more heartfelt direction, Bess Atwell continues to shine as one of the more tantalising talents on the rise right now.

Adding about “Something Now”, she said, “This track is a celebration of feeling, written in a moment of empowerment when I was tapering off antidepressants. I’m not anti-medication, but I realised I’d become frightened of my feelings and it signalled a change in me that I was prepared to feel a broader spectrum of emotion.

“Opening myself up to emotional discomfort meant confronting beliefs I had developed to protect myself from it. At some point, probably at a very young age, I had decided that any suffering myself and my family had been through could be offset by becoming successful in my career. I could settle the score by turning pain into something beautiful and lucrative. Something Now challenges the childlike idealism of this belief, and explores how it was just another form of avoidance and unwillingness to feel. It champions the idea that pain doesn’t take away from joy, if anything it adds to it.”

Produced by The National’s Aaron Dessner (Taylor Swift, Ben Howard, Sharon Van Etten, Ed Sheeran), ‘Light Sleeper’ looks to continue the warm and effervescent aesthetic Bess Atwell has been cultivating for herself in recent years. Featuring the previously shared tracks ‘Sylvester’, ‘Release Myself’ and ‘The Weeping’, her newest offering sees her grow not only as a songwriter, but as one of this country’s more revered artists.

Speaking about ‘Light Sleeper’, she said, “Light Sleeper is about the willingness to feel. While writing the album, I was realising that somewhere along the line I had become very afraid of feeling. The record is about facing this realisation and finding the bravery to challenge it. It’s still hard for me to believe that I got to make this record with one of my heroes, but somehow, I got that lucky. Aaron Dessner posted about one of my songs on Instagram at the beginning of 2022. We got chatting on there and before I knew it, we’d made plans to meet up at All Points East and were discussing making a record together. He told me that Light Sleeper is the first album he’s worked on in several years that he didn’t write, which is a huge honour. My approach on Light Sleeper was to give up concern with what’s cool and to reconnect with why I make the things I make. I was afraid to really sing on my previous record, having come to believe it wasn’t cool or would draw attention to the fact that I am indeed an emotional woman and therefore not to be taken as seriously. This time, I wanted to really sing, I wanted to discuss my fears and feelings, I wanted to connect, and I wanted to perform like I meant it, because I do. After all, how can I write an album about the willingness to feel and be too afraid to sing like I mean it?”

Fresh from supporting Ed Sheeran at the Royal Albert Hall, Atwell will play a series of intimate live shows in June including a sold-out London’s Union Chapel, Bristol’s Thekla, and Manchester’s converted cinema venue Band On The Wall. These intimate surroundings should prove the ideal match for these exposing, quietly fearless songs of self-exploration.  These shows will be followed by support slots with The National in June & July and a newly announced UK headline tour in support of the album release, including a run of dates in October and London’s KOKO in February ’25. Full list of live dates below. 

Bess Atwell live dates:

06 June | Manchester, UK | Band On The Wall
07 June | London, UK | Union Chapel SOLD OUT
08 June | Bristol, UK | Thekla
25 June | Vienna, AT | Stadthalle w/ The National
27 June | Bonn, DE | Kunstirasen w/ The National 
11 July | Edinburgh, UK | Edinburgh Castles w/ The National 
02 October | Norwich, UK | Arts Centre
03 October | Cambridge, UK | Junction 2
04 October | Nottingham, UK | Rescue Rooms
05 October | Leeds, UK | Belgrave Music Hall
06 October | Newcastle, UK | The Cluny
08 October | Glasgow, UK | St. Luke’s
09 October | Liverpool, UK | Leaf
11 October | Belfast, UK | The Black Bo
12 October | Dublin, IRE | The Grand Social
15 October | Cardiff, UK | Clwb Ifor Bach
16 October | Birmingham, UK | Hare & Hounds
17 October | Oxford, UK | The Bullingdon
18 October | Brighton, UK | Concorde 222 February 2025 | London, UK | KOKO

Bess Atwell in-store dates:

24 May | Brighton | Resident
25 May | Oxford | Truck
26 May | Bristol | Rough Trade
27 May | Nottingham | Rough Trade
28 May | Leeds | Jumbo
29 May | Liverpool | Rough Trade
23 May | London | Rough Trade East

Light Sleeper Tracklist:

1. Everyone Who’s Not In Love With You Is Wrong
2. Release Myself
3. Sylvester
4. Fan Favourite
5. The Weeping
6. Something Now
7. Spinning Sun
8. I Am Awake
9. Crowds
10. Light Sleeper


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