It’s been nearly a decade since Florence + The Machine broke onto the music scene with the song “Dog Days Are Over.” And while those ten years have provided plenty of ups and downs for Florence Welch, her upcoming fourth record, High As Hope, is bound to be yet another album full of music on vulnerability, resilience, pain and hope.
This week Welch released her second single of the year, “Hunger”, which she told BBC’s Annie Mac wasn’t originally going to even be on the record at all, “It’s weird,” she said. “I never thought this song would be a song. It was a poem I was writing about the way I think I have perhaps looked for love in things that weren’t love…” and how looking for love in the wrong places can make us feel more isolating. “What I think I was trying to express is this feeling that you’re not good enough, you have to be perfect, how can you get love, how to be acceptable, and what is the right way to be and the ways you hurt yourself because of that lack of self love,” Welch said. You hear this resonated in the opening lines of “Hunger” — ““At 17, I started to starve myself / I thought that love was a kind of emptiness.”
It was only once she began playing the song to people that she realized, because “Hunger” comes from a vulnerable place, that it needed to be on the album. “I guess I made myself more vulnerable in this song to encourage connection because perhaps a lot more of us feel this way than we are able to admit. Sometimes when you can’t say it, you can sing it,” Welch said in a statement.
The new record was primarily written, produced and recorded by Welch, along with Emile Haynie as the record was being finished in Los Angeles. In making High As Hope, Welch told the BBC that she “found the joy again in making music” that she says she lost when making How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful at a very painful place in her life. Making High As Hope was the first time in a while she says that felt like she was making the record for herself.
Florence + the Machine already have a slew of music festival dates lined up with a series of intimate shows this summer. Their fourth record comes out on June 29th via Republic Records.