Annie O Presents: Gordi

Annie O’s live music series in the Penthouse of The Standard, East Village is a smart bet any time of year, but in summer it’s a must. We can’t think of anywhere we’d rather be on an early summer evening than up on the rooftop, drink in hand, listening to the live sounds curated by our East Village music maven. The vibes are very real and you should come experience them for yourself. 
On Tuesday, June 20th, Annie O's bringing Australia’s Gordi, née Sophie Payten, to the Penthouse alongside Wilsen. The 24-year-old’s getting ready to release her debut LP, Reservoir, and if her 2016 EP, Clever Disguise (which Stereogum described as “a work of absolute splendor that will almost certainly make her a star”) is any indication of what’s to come, get excited. Get to know the artist in her interview with Annie O before she takes the Penthouse stage.
Annie O Presents: Gordi
Tuesday, June 20, 7-9PM
The Standard, East Village Penthouse
Free with an RSVP to

ANNIE O: Tell us a little bit about your journey from your EP, Clever Disguise, to 
the highly-anticipated debut LP, Reservoir.
GORDI: Clever Disguise was released in May 2016 and it had been about an 18-month build up to that. I could only afford to record the EP one track at a time, so it took a little while. In the months leading into the EP release, I started to think about what would follow. I had a lot of songs but knew it was important to keep writing because I wanted to have more than enough. After the EP came out in May, I toured the U.S. in May and June, and came back in July to begin recording the album. The songs from Reservoir were then recorded in bits and pieces over the rest of 2016 and by the start of 2017, I had most of the album finished but lots of work still to be done. I spent the first six weeks of the year traveling around working with various musicians and producers, and by the end of February, Reservoir was finished. 
Where did you record the album?
Many places. The first stint of tracking I did in New York, and then some in LA on the way home. I visited LA again to record some more songs with Tim Anderson later in the year. The two songs I produced I recorded in Surry Hills in Sydney at Turning Studios. Then in January of 2017, I headed to Reykjavik to work with Alex Somers on the final three tracks from the album, which was a pretty amazing time. His studio was beautiful and looked out over the main lake in Reykjavik. Every morning, I would walk the 15 minutes across town through the snow before started on long sessions with Alex. From Reykjavik, I flew to Wisconsin and spent a week there with Zach Hanson bringing the entire album together—there were stems to gather from all over the world, even Helsinki. So, the week I spent in Wisconsin at April Base Studio was the week it started to sound like a record. Some strings were recorded in New York and everything was finally mixed by Franc Tetaz in LA.
Are there mostly new songs on the new LP or have you dug some out of the vault? 
A bit of a mix. Five of the songs were written last year and the others over the last four years. “Bitter End” and “Can We Work It Out” go the furthest back. They were written in 2013.
Do you usually create at home or at the studio?
Definitely at home. I usually only like to go into the studio when it’s time to track stuff for the record. For the actual writing part, I like to be out of the studio. Usually something specific will inspire me to write, and if I don't feel particularly inspired, I’ll spend a lot of time delving into the work of other artists.
Are there any tracks by other artists you currently have on repeat?
I’ve decided to listen to each Sigur Ros album in order, so today I’ve been going through Von. I’ve also been listening Beth Orton, Aldous Harding, and Julia Jacklin. The track that I really have on repeat though is “Happiness” from the Riceboy Sleeps album, because I’m on tour at the moment and I often need to really try and relax and come back to the center, and this track has that in bucket-loads.
What are you most excited about with the release of Reservoir? And what are you most nervous about?
I’m just excited for people to hear it. So much has been poured into this album—not only from me, but also from the people I’ve worked with—and I just
want people to hear it. I’m excited for people to discover something new in this album, for a song from it to become a song that means something to them. I guess you¹re always a bit nervous about reaction of media and things like that, but I try to only focus on the things that are within my control, so for the moment, I’m going to go with excitement.
Any summer touring plans?
I’ll be touring Australia in July with Asgeir (though it will be our winter), but come August, I’ll be back in North America starting with Osheaga in Montreal, then Toronto, NY, Boston, Philly, Washington, and then over to the West Coast. There’s a full list up somewhere!
If Gordi had a superpower, what would it be?
To be in many places at once.
Where is home for you?
Canowindra, where I grew up and where my parents live. I live in Sydney most of the time now, but I’m away quite a lot. Home for me will always be Canowindra.
What can we expect from your show at The Annie O Music Series?
I’ll be playing a stripped back, solo acoustic set. There'll be a mixture of songs from the EP and from the upcoming album, most of which haven't
been released yet. I'll try and tell a good story, too.

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