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Ashley Shadow Shares Music Video for 'Don't Slow Me Down' featuring Bonnie "Prince" Billy

The Vancouver, B.C.-based songwriter, Ashley Shadow is today sharing the video for her recent Pitchfork, Stereogum and Brooklyn Vegan-tipped single, "Don't Slow Me Down" (feat Bonnie "Prince" Billy). The visual piece, directed by Tyler McLeod, comes off the back of critical acclaim for the recent album, Only the End – out now via Felte – which found positive support from Pitchfork, MOJO, Stereogum, Brooklyn Vegan, All Music, Secret Meeting and more upon release.

The video is a moving addition to the music. Filmed separately it finds Ashley and Bonnie "Prince" Billy (aka Will Oldham) connecting in isolation to produce something that touches on nostalgic references, presented with stuttering tape reels and analog effects. Speaking about the making of the video, Ashley says: "Since we had trouble connecting in the flesh with Will Oldham we decided to get creative with our approach to this video. I asked Will to send some footage to the song with little direction and said to get as weird as he wanted with it, he’s a professional. When Will’s footage arrived Tyler McLeod and I were pumped up and the gears started turning. The creative juices were flowing and it all unfolded a wave of cosmic vibrations. Through analog effects and nostalgic references the video took on its own life and we succumbed to the creative forces of multi-dimensional techniques. Thus a video was born." While the songs on Only the End were conceived in contemplative solitude, Ashley invited some very capable collaborators into the studio to assist with the process of recording; alongside the aforementioned Bonnie "Prince" Billy, Shadow invited Paul Rigby (Neko Case), Joshua Wells (Black Mountain, Lightning Dust), Colin Cowan (Elastic Stars) and Ryan Beattie (Himalayan Bear). Ashley, the twin sister of Amber Webber (of Lightning Dust, co-founder of Black Mountain), has previously contributed vocals to Bonnie "Prince" Billy's album, Lie Down in the Light, Pink Mountaintop's Outside Love, The Cave Singers' Welcome Joy and more.

Ashley Shadow winks at the darkness, but she won’t lead you towards it. It’s easy to fall under the spell of Ashley’s haunting voice. The Vancouver, B.C.-based songwriter forged her own identity as a songwriter with 2016’s eponymous self-titled debut. Her sophomore effort, Only the End, maintains the moody introspection that is ingrained in Pacific Northwest life, but now comes armed with a palpable hope complementing her signature melancholy. “I wanted to make a more upbeat album, something you could play with some friends over. Some of the songs I wrote were initially bummers, but when we went to record them, we lightened them up.” Balancing a couple of jobs and navigating life and love in increasingly unstable times, the album was written over two years by Ashley at her apartment. Her confident vibrato above lightly, distorted guitars mirrors the album’s theme of resilience, if not triumph, over adversity. There is comfort in these warm songs that endorse the realism of contented acceptance, rather than the naïve search for non-existent utopias. Ashley’s first album saw her take center stage after more than a decade of gracing friends’ projects in a supporting role. The move to the front was a cautious one. “First record was, can I do a solo album? This time, I know what I’m doing. It’s way more clear.” It’s clear to anyone listening. It’s Only the End. If only all endings were so glorious.

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