Premiere: Mark Loughrey – Nothing But A Truth / Strangled Birds


Having relocated to Berlin in 2017 shortly after the release of debut album Treppenwitz, Sion Mills, Tyrone native Mark Loughrey is back with his first release in three years. Loughrey’s stay in Berlin  has seen him engage with and draw inspiration from its community, with A-side ‘Nothing But A Truth’ being another marked progression from a songwriter who effortlessly marries his own fernweh with a voyeuristic glimpse at the lives and insights of strangers.

The single is taken from his forthcoming home-recorded EP, On Through the Veil Anew, completed during a period of self-isolation. As Loughrey tells us, “each track was written to a third person, and all address change in some way, be it physical, spiritual, seasonal or societal”. Produced by Carl Small, and featuring some of their most ornately-arranged work so far, the confluence of electric and acoustic sounds add new dynamism to the songwriter’s trad-tinged and earthy, yet ethereal craft.

Mark gave us some insight into the inspiration behind the single: “‘Nothing But A Truth’ came from a night of incredibly strange, yet wonderful, lone wanderings around San Francisco’s Castro District. It was there that I came across the central character of the song, Gendry, an incredibly kind & resilient soul who had his whole life uprooted by a lie from someone he trusted the most. It’s a curious and terrible thing that our lives can forever change over the course of one bad day & perhaps not even by our own hand. The song itself deals with these themes in the form an open letter from half a world away, filled with questions that may in fact never be answered but nonetheless offer a glimmer of hope.”

B-side ‘Strangled Birds’ is a reworking of the A-side by sound artist James Bruce aka Oaks – who himself has exciting new work on the way. A sinuous web of tape loops, vocal note samplings, field recordings & experimental studio techniques, it’s a masterfully kaleidoscopic re-contextualisation of the source. Check them out:

is Gig Guide Editor & guitarist/vocalist with Junk Drawer, PigsAsPeople & Sister Ghost. Appreciator of Neil Young, vinyl, black coffee, Richard Linklater, light & shade.