Stereo Embers The Podcast: Dot Allison (One Dove)

Written by on 08/26/2021

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“Heart Shaped Scars”

The Scottish born Dot Allison made her initial splash in music fronting the indie dance band One Dove. They only put out one record—-1993’s Morning Dove White—but if you were a band that was only going to put one record out, Morning Dove White would be the perfect choice. A dizzying blend of hypnotic electronica and pulsing melodic pop, Morning Dove White is an undeniable classic. From there, Allison launched her solo career, putting out the wondrous album Afterglow in 1999. Since then, she’s put out several solo efforts, including We Are Science, Exaltation of Larks and her brand new one, which is also her first in 12 years, Heart Shaped Scars. Along the way she’s collaborated with everyone from Paul Weller to Pete Doherty to Scott Walker to Kevin Shields. A sonorous collection of hypnotic indie folk that’s punctuated by dreamy and dedicated melodies, Heart Shaped Scars is one of the most stirring and quietly riveting collections of the year. Filled with lyrics that are informed by botany, philosophy, and the organic behavior of the natural world, its an album that’s intricate, and personal, yet also decidedly universal. Perhaps Allison’s botanist father planted the seeds for her interest in the behaviors of the natural world and perhaps her musician mother inspired her to pursue music. Those wouldn’t be illogical conclusions. But that only scratches the surface of the area Alison is exploring on this record. A Whitmanic approach to the natural world has found her digging in to what makes things connect both consciously and unconsciously. When Whitman writes “For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you,” that’s what she’s after. Connection. Awareness. The living intelligence of the natural world that provides patterns and templates that stretch from the past to the un-lived future. This conversation is pure joy and it addresses connectivity, collaboration and….leaf blowers….

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