Edward and Jane’s third and final EP ‘With You, Always’ is their finest piece of music yet – a haunting twenty-minute masterpiece of sound and color – and while it’s a damn shame that it’s their last release, they’re going out on top.
Stream: ‘With You, Always’ – Edward and Jane
Edward and Jane’s third EP is their finest piece of music yet – a twenty-minute masterpiece of sound and color that finds the “folkicana” outfit excelling at what they do best; and while it’s a damn shame that it’s the Chattanooga band’s last release, they’re going out on top. Ambient, intimate, and full of haunting emotional depth, With You, Always is a poignant encapsulation of love, loss, growth and change, and all that good in-between stuff we like to call “life.”
say you’re blind, been spinning for hours
You climb in bed, I’ll jump in the shower
feel alone in the cave of Your covers
while the knife pushes deeper
I’m reminded We’re lovers
take what You need from Me, babe
take all that I’ve got
to tell You the truth I’m afraid
it won’t be enough
– “The Knife,” Edward + Jane
Independently released May 29, With You, Always arrives as a somber, unexpected farewell from a band we’ve come to know and love here at Atwood Magazine. The Chattanooga, Tennessee-based six-piece band led by husband-wife duo Timothy Edward Carpenter (guitar/vocals) and Emilie Jane Creutzinger (mandolin/vocals), Edward and Jane introduced their stirring “folkicana”-branded blend of folk and Americana music in early 2017 and have been on something of a role ever since, evolving tremendously over a three-year span that saw them shortlisted as one of the country’s foremost up-and-comers on the folk rock scene.
2017’s gorgeous debut EP As Family We Gather set a high bar full of acoustic warmth and wonder. Released a little more than a year later, 2018’s Too Early to Tell EP found Edward and Jane wielding more instruments and embracing ambitious, colorful arrangements that expanded their palette, while holding true to their base identity. In reviewing their fight song “Hold Your Own” back in 2018, Atwood gave the band high praise for setting themselves apart as much in spirit, as in energy: “Edward and Jane are the Americana version of The Killers, exuding passion and purpose with sonic similarities to folk-rock titans like Mumford & Sons, The Head and the Heart, and The Lumineers.”
After releasing the delicate, orchestral song “Blue Ridge Goodbyes” in 2019, Edward and Jane made a powerful return earlier this year. In premiering With You, Always’ lead single “The Knife” in April, we hailed the track as a song “that gleams like hot metal” in its dark, heavy ambience and raw lyrical grit: “Both a diversion from, and a continuation of the “folkicana” sound we’ve come to know and love from Edward and Jane, “The Knife” is something old and something new merged into one. Dirty, dusty, and full of feeling and edge, Edward and Jane’s new track captures leagues of emotion through heavy, ambient guitar work, a sweet string accompaniment, and expressive vocals that capture a world full of empathy and pain. A weary soul comes to life as Edward and Jane let their moving music wash over our ears and our hearts.”
The primary adjective for this third and final installment in the Edward and Jane saga is “cinematic”: With You, Always is a cinematic force to be reckoned with – a spellbinding five-track exploration that slows us down, and immerses us in the present moment. The band tug at our heartstrings with aching outpouring of emotion; whether they’re professing love or reeling through loss, they soak their art in tangible, palpable feeling. This comes to light in tracks like the downtempo “Everything’s Different (Yellow Springs)” and the lo-fi “Pictures on My Shelf,” both of which paint vivid stories whilst leaving us stunned into silence.
“With You, Always is the concluding collection of songs in the Edward and Jane catalogue,” the band recently shared with Atwood Magazine. “We sought out to cram an entire LP worth of sounds, ideas, and emotions into this five-song EP, and undoubtedly succeeded. The album calls attention to the relationship linking joy and pain, and is intended to leave the listener feeling grounded. We gleaned more throughout the making of this EP than in the rest of our musical career combined. It has been a wise teacher and a comforting friend, arriving promptly when we needed it most.
The album calls attention to the relationship linking joy and pain, and is intended to leave the listener feeling grounded.
With You, Always is draining: It will leave you breathless, exhausted, and in need of a cool shower. It will break your heart, and help it mend.
Like The Civil Wars before them, Edward and Jane have left us all too soon, but we will forever be glad for the times we had and the moments we shared together. Three EPs – each one more powerful and moving than the last – document a unique American artistry at a time of both turbulence and prosperity; these songs, especially those on this final record, stand as a catalog for the little moments – lives lived and connections shared. They remind us to be here, now; to take nothing for granted, and cherish what we’ve got. While we hope this is not the last we hear from the Carpenter family, With You, Always feels like an all-too fitting way to say goodbye.
Experience the full record via the below stream, and peek inside Edward and Jane’s With You, Always EP with Atwood Magazine as Timothy Edward and Emilie Jane Carpenter take us track-by-track through the music and lyrics of their final release.
Stream: ‘With You, Always’ – Edward and Jane
:: Inside With You, Always ::
When we initially sent this song to our producer in the form of a demo, it was a fingerpicking, endearing ballad. It wasn’t until we stumbled upon a unique perspective involving synth leads and hard panned vocals that we discovered the ambient, cinematic final mix.
I (Jane) have battled severe migraines amongst other health complications in recent years. Toward the end of 2019, we were moments away from headlining a music festival when I began to feel one of the worst flare-ups I can recall. The band had to hold my hand as I walked up the stage steps because this particular headache left me temporarily blinded for the next twenty-four hours. I had never experienced something quite as terrifying as performing our entire set, without the ability to see.
I (Edward) felt unbearably helpless in my effort to give care to my wife in her pain. The strength and resilience she exhibited whilst performing with elegance amidst her suffering was unbelievably inspiring. The morning after the show, in an attempt to process all that had happened in what felt like a blur the night before, the verses and chorus for the song seemed to flow from my mind unchallenged. Featuring reversed vocal tracks, dark electric-guitar work, and complex string arrangements, we tried our best to articulate a palpable sense of physical and emotional pain.
Everything’s Different (Yellow Springs)
Everything’s Different took the longest of any song on the record to write – but was finished in one eternal sitting. I sat down, as I typically do, with a timer set for an hour to write. Over my formative years I have diligently practiced a dedicated songwriting hour once a day where I commit to complete a song. Though the majority of what comes out is shit, the outcome is a regular flexing of my creative muscle and it has proved beneficial to me. During this particular writing session, I had unearthed an acoustic guitar hook I knew I couldn’t walk away from and I reset the timer for another hour. I repeated this process hour-by-hour until the song was completed. Everything’s Different is the only song I’ve written that wasn’t revised after its initial draft.
The setting for this song is Yellow Springs, Ohio, a tiny free-spirited town where we absconded together for romantic adventures in our high-school days. The song is a slowly dissolving memory of the past that has unexpectedly taught us considerably about our future. While we were initially hesitant, it was our producer, Jonathan Class, that suggested we include an extended trumpet-led instrumental outro and the outcome was a wave of nostalgia we could never have predicted but have come to love.
Picture on My Shelf
On December 5th, 2019 a close friend of our family took his life. In the unbearable days that followed, it seemed as if time slowed down and the colors that saturate our world began to fade. Nothing can be said to alter the past, nor to repair the splintered hearts of those who have felt the torment wreaked by suicide. As a writer, sometimes the only way to process such grief is to write. Picture on My Shelf is a result of such times. We had planned to only record four songs for With You, Always, however a few weeks after losing one friend, we learned of the loss of another friend – it was at this point we knew we ought to include this song on the EP.
The song is recorded completely live. We sat facing one another in a tracking room and sang through our tears as we tracked two comprehensive takes of the song, the second of which is featured on the record in all of its painful candor.
I Can’t Help
Over a year predating its release, I Can’t Help was written during a quarrelsome period between myself (Edward) and a close friend and bandmate of ours. The other four songs on the EP were written over the span of about a month – not long before taking them to the studio. Preceding these songs by nearly a year, I Can’t Help was the only song I originally thought might be conspicuous as lacking in maturity comparatively. We ultimately reconstructed the verses from the ground up to reflect our recent interaction as husband and wife and to build a simple chorus that emanated desire for reconciliation and intimacy. It took nearly seven hours to dial in the vocal-style we envisioned. This song demanded the most revision and dedication, but we believe in the end it became the glue that holds the album together.
With You, Always
Three days before walking into the studio to record this record, we wrote With You, Always. It came at just the right time and we had no idea it would become the title track for the EP, let alone the final song we would ever write under the moniker, Edward + Jane. I (Edward) have a tendency to live in my mind. I have found myself all too often trading life before my eyes for life behind my eyes. This song is my attempt to permanently and publicly stamp a resolution to be more honestly and actively present into the record that is my life. It is written from the perspective of my wife, Emilie Jane, serving as a plea to come down from the clouds a little more often and a promise to always be waiting by my side.
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? © Brooke Hamilton (IG @pbtphotography)
:: Stream Edward and Jane ::