Daughter of A Working Man took five years to make, with some songs dating back 10 years, partly because it’s, in Mikol’s words, “sonically, the most ambitious project” she’s done, describing it as more textured and complicated than her last record.
“It’s a very important piece of work for me, to be honest. I wanted to give it more time and make sure I did it right,” said the Halifax-based musician during an interview ahead of her release show in New Glasgow in June.
This is Mikol’s third album, described in a press release as “a folk record dressed up in strings, electronic effects, and textured vocals,” and first solo release in five years.
The Cape Breton-raised songwriter has been busy, touring and working with other bands and musicians, including a co-write with Ria Mae on her hit Ooh Love.
Mikol compares songwriting to jogging and changing up your routine, rather than running the same flat course every time.
“You’re challenging your muscle in a different way when you start working in a genre slightly outside of your natural genre,” she said, adding that while musicians may perform in a certain style, it doesn’t mean they can’t write in another one, noting Mae’s pop style while Mikol is closer to folk.
Produced by Pictou County’s Jon Landry, Mikol said she’s proud of the record and their collaboration.
Landry’s presence can be heard on Spirits and Good Luck, with the track arranged by The Stanfields frontman. Other additions to Mikol’s masterful songwriting and stirring voice include the strings arrangements on Dreams and 1969.
Mikol said she wrote 1969 a long time ago and has tried to put it on previous albums as an acoustic song, ultimately deciding against it.
When she sat down at the piano with the song, “everything about the song made more sense,” recording it quickly with few takes before David Langstroth added an arrangement with the Rhapsody Quintet.
The song finally feels complete, she said, after taking “years to mature.”
While songs like Home feel more personal, the track Hold serves as an anthem for those fighting to break down barriers, stemming from a project at the Celtic Colours festival that paired contemporary songwriters with fiddlers and pipers.
Mikol will share her new album at a Glasgow Square show on June 9 in the Green Room, with guest EB Anderson. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. and tickets cost $15 in advance and $20 at the door.