20 albums and 25 years into her recording career and only now does Thea Gilmore feel enough of herself to make the self-titled album that renews her vows to music – her first love. The album is released on 6th October. The album was entirely written, played and produced by Thea. Thea Gilmore is absolutely the record she wanted to make. In many ways the record she had to make. Sustained by the very public dissection of her personal life laid bare on her last full-length release, the stunningly intimate Afterlight, Thea’s hard-earned reputation as one of the most distinctive, strident and bold singer songwriters of her generation propels her to reach for new ground and this new release feels like a great leap forward into tomorrow. “That’s why this is my first self-titled album,” she explains. “On my last album I changed by name to Afterlight and drew a line under everything I’d done up to that point. Not to invalidate it, but to put an end to the ‘before’. It was a very inward-looking record that was rooted in the darkness of everything that happened to me up to 2019, whereas this album has its head up and is eyeing the world as a challenge. It’s a logical forward motion – the emergence from the shadows of Afterlight into the relative lightness of Thea Gilmore – in a renewal of my vows to music; my first love. In a weird way it feels like a debut of sorts so it made sense to make it eponymous.” Across 12 tracks Thea delves into the cracks between the paving slabs of life’s big themes. She’s exploring the understanding that comes with experience, choosing her battles and finding out who she is now. The stunning ‘She Speak In Colours’ is a song for love and loss written as part of BBC Radio 2’s critically lauded 21st Century Folk project; while ‘The Next Time You Win’ with its simple piano figures and its collage of spoken and sung lines seems to both accept the way the world works while reaffirming the pledge to stand on the frontline of change.