Durham, North Carolina-based cellist, vocalist, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Jacob Morris spent years establishing himself in Athens, Georgia's music biome, supporting some of its finest musicians and songwriters, including Ham 1, Vic Chesnutt, Liz Durrett, Madeline Adams, and Patterson Hood of the Drive-By Truckers. The second single from his upcoming Slow Funeral EP, “Stoney,” is out today—inspired by an eerie email he received from his grandmother. Slow Funeral will be released on June 23, on New West imprint Strolling Bones Records.
“'Stoney' sprung from an email that my grandmother sent me right before she passed away at the age of 95,” Morris told The Big Takeover. “She described feeling like she was sinking into her bed and was going to drift away. I have no idea why I was the only recipient or why she didn't say anything else.”
“The dark dream is that there is no meaning to our existence,” he continues. “But there's a resolve at the end where the being or soul returns like sediment to some sort of continuum."
“Stoney” follows the release of “Lister,” an anti-war musing that questions who owns history. The EP, as a collection, is an amalgam of psych-folk-rock that leans into existential questioning, but in the form of sometimes spacey, sometimes surreal, pastorally-tinged thoughts. Morris is often compared musically to such artists as Nick Drake, John Cale and Elliott Smith. On Slow Funeral, he is ably backed up by Elephant Six veteran John Fernandes, as well as Thomas Valadez, Cullen Toole and Al Daglis (who co-produced the album with Morris).
Patterson Hood says, "The record draws you in with its midnight vibes and hypnotic pull. In addition to his excellent musicianship, Jacob has an angelic voice and writes fantastic songs... [Slow Funeral is] beautiful and thoughtful, pulling you into its trancelike universe and wrapping around you like a warm blanket on a snowy morning."