Having been touring since her teens, Harkin’s reputation as an in-demand multi-instrumentalist has seen her pass through 30 countries, whilst writing and releasing three critically-acclaimed records with her own band Sky Larkin. Her work garnered the attention of friends and fellow former Leeds dwellers Wild Beasts, with whom she worked across their Smother tour, and reverberated across the pond to urgent cult trio Sleater-Kinney, who recruited her as a touring member upon their triumphant return to the live stage.
Now, though – as she unveils her debut solo project – the collaborator steps out as the singular; her new set-up giving further platform to her idiosyncratic, muscular guitar-playing and revealing a body of work which is equally propelled by a life on the move and anchored by her romance for the North of England.
Having begun writing her new material while holed up in New York against the backdrop of a polar vortex, Harkin’s work is, in part, coloured by her external geography. From her new base in England’s wild Peak District, whose surrounding moors form a stark and unparalleled backdrop to her writing, yet within arm’s reach of the underground music scenes of Sheffield and Leeds, she creates work that is both introspective and expansive. The personal and the global play out against each other, wryly observed and digested in songs that are striking and disarming, and intimate without being permissive.