The binary of casual crisis is a powerful force in Julia Jacklin’s music. Since releasing her debut album Don’t Let the Kids Win in 2016, the Melbourne-via-Blue Mountains singer/songwriter has carved out a fearsome reputation as a direct lyricist, willing to excavate the parameters of intimacy and agency in songs both stark and raw, loose, and playful. If her folky 2016 debut Don’t Let the Kids Win announced those intentions, and the startling 2019 follow-up Crushing drew in listeners uncomfortably close, PRE PLEASURE is the sound of Jacklin gently loosening her grip.
Conceived upon returning home at the end of a mammoth Crushing world tour, and finished in a frantic few months of recording in Montreal (“The songs on this record took either three years to write or three minutes”), PRE PLEASURE sees Jacklin expanding beyond her signature sound, while conjuring the ripples and faultlines caused by unreliable communication.
Recorded in Montreal with co-producer Marcus Paquin (The Weather Station, The National), PRE PLEASURE finds Jacklin teamed with her Canada-based touring band, bassist Ben Whiteley and guitarist Will Kidman, both of Canadian folk outfit The Weather Station. It also introduces drummer Laurie Torres, saxophonist Adam Kinner and string arrangements by Owen Pallett (Arcade Fire) recorded by a full orchestra in Prague.