How people choose to navigate through life’s highs and lows reveals a lot about their personal character, not to mention what they’re willing to do in order to get to the other side of the horizon. Chronicling these seemingly endless cycles of daily peaks and valleys forms the backbone of Sin & Redemption, the latest album from noted Nashville-based singer-songwriter David Newbould, which is set for release on October 18th via Rock Ridge Music.
Sin & Redemption was co-produced by Chris Tench and Tres Sasser and recorded over the course of three weeks at the quite appropriately named Sound Shelter Studios in Franklin, Tennessee. The resulting album is a powerful, 10-song testament from a veteran songwriter at the height of his storytelling prowess, now eight albums deep into his upward-trending career.
In many ways, the messages at the very core of Sin & Redemption show just how focused the Toronto-born and New York City-bred vocalist/guitarist Newbould is at being the director of his own ongoing sonic movie. It’s especially fitting, considering how Newbould’s inherently cinematic songwriting style has also led to a number of his tunes appearing in a score of TV shows and movies over the years, including Criminal Minds, Dawson’s Creek, Joan of Arcadia, and Streets of Blood (to name but a few of the entries on his filmographic CV).
Sin & Redemption straddles that line in the sand we all face whenever coming to our own personal crossroads, at the exact moment when we have to make those hardline, either/or life choices. No doubt about it — the album establishes a connection to your very soul as the perfectly poured sonic elixir that continues to heal all ills upon repeated spins. And in the case of David Newbould, living in Sin isn’t a bad thing at all.
Today Glide is excited to premiere “Sensitive Heart”, one of the standout tracks on the new album. With a soaring and full rock and roll sound and a catchy earworm chorus, the song is reminiscent of the everyman craftmanship of artists like Bruce Springsteen and Tom Petty. While Newbould isn’t afraid to take his sound all over the musical map, this tune balances straightforward rock with a pop sensibility that feels like it could be a radio hit back in those golden days when rockers actually had hits.
Listen to the tune and read our chat with Newbould below…
What prompted you to write the song? Is there a story behind it?
That day I was looking to write something as close to a pop-type rock song as anything I’d ever find myself doing. It’s about being protective of the emotions of someone who you maybe just didn’t have it in you to hold on to, whether it be a lover, a daughter, a friend, or anyone really.
Was this a song that came easily to you, or did it take some time to write?
It came really fast. I didn’t really take it seriously at first because usually I agonize over songs for hours and hours, and this one was done in maybe one hour, tops. Then I realized I’d kind of blurted something out that had an emotion, had a sense about it, so I tucked it away until I could find a good opportunity for it to live. I was also really attached to the chord structure.
How has moving to Nashville impacted your music and your songwriting? Do you feel more at home there than you did in New York, Austin, or even Toronto?
It has certainly impacted my writing, though I wouldn’t necessarily say I feel more at home. I moved here to explore the Nashville songwriting universe – song pitching and so forth – and to work the NE and SE with a different booking agency than the one who’d been working me in Texas. I discovered the publishing world here was basically all geared towards commercial country radio, and the booking agency fell apart the moment I got here, so I was kind of just “here,” and missed Austin a lot. I’d be lying, though, if I said that Nashville hasn’t helped me get more to the core of the things I want to write about, and I’m ultimately glad to have made the move. My family and I are also really happy here. Texas really helped me expand the storytelling aspect of my songwriting, and Nashville has probably helped me with streamlining or focusing it. Songwriting here is such a business, and even if you work around the parameters of the commercial country vortex as I do, you find the level of writing here is still raised up to some of the highest level anywhere. There are thousands of amazing songs floating around Nashville right now that most people will never get to hear. The place has a way of weeding out those who aren’t ready or able to give it all, in a way that maybe Austin didn’t – it’s just so dang comfortable there. But I do have to add, Austin still has some of the best writers and players anywhere in the world, and certainly the history of Texas music might be the richest in all of the country. I did feel a deep connection with New York as well, but that kind of arc’d naturally, and it was time to go. The same goes for Toronto… although hometowns are different – you spend your entire adolescence plotting a way to get out!
What do you hope listeners take away from having heard this song? How about from having listened to the whole album?
I just hope the song makes people feel something good, and makes them want to dig into the record more. The whole album is ultimately about the feelings that rumble beneath the surface, and the catharses that can hopefully come in meeting reality head on. And also, while the songwriting is really the engine for everything to me, I place the utmost value in the sound and feeling of rock and roll – great drums, loud guitars, melodies that feel good, synergy. It defined my life and I just want to continue to fly the flag.
Photo credit: Sebastian Smith