Aoife O’Donovan’s sophomore album, In the Magic Hour — produced by Tucker Martine (The Decemberists, Neko Case) — is a 10-song album full of the singer’s honeyed vocals mixed with gauzy, frictionless sounds: splashing cymbals, airy harmonies, the leisurely baritone musings of an electric guitar. Written in the wake of O’Donovan’s grandfather’s death, In the Magic Hour is her most introspective effort yet, an aching exploration of memory and mortality.
For a decade, O’Donovan wielded her instrument with tensile strength as the captivating lead singer of the Boston-based progressive string band Crooked Still. She was a featured vocalist on “The Goat Rodeo Sessions,” the Grammy-winning album by Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer and Chris Thile, has made regular appearances on A Prairie Home Companion and collaborated with some of the most eminent names in music across a wide variety of genres from Alison Krauss to Dave Douglas.
In 2013 O’Donovan released her debut solo album, Fossils, a moody collection of original songs with a country lilt. The album garnered praise from The New York Times and Rolling Stone, while The Guardian deemed O’Donovan the “next Americana celebrity.” Most recently O’Donovan has lent her voice to the folk trio I’m With Her with singers Sara Watkins (Nickel Creek) and Sarah Jarosz.
What the press is saying...
"Aoife O'Donovan's singing is almost too gorgeous for its own good."
–– Washington Post
“Sweetness and sadness find a tenuous balance in the voice of Aoife O’Donovan — and in the songs on her second album…evokes the reverberant chamber pop observations of Grizzly Bear…[and] the lush austerity of Alison Krauss."
— The New York Times
“Her songs are frequently sun-kissed and feather-like, but sometimes develop a dark beauty…exhilarating and exploratory.”
“O’Donovan pushes her genre’s often confining envelope into brave, exciting territory.”
— American Songwriter
“Gorgeous…The sparse-but-intricate arrangements speak to O'Donovan's conservatory training, but are delicately shaded with her pristine voice and smears of electric guitar or wisps of fiddle.”
— Rolling Stone