ANOHNI and the Johnsons have announced a new album. My Back Was a Bridge for You to Cross will arrive Friday, 7th July via Rough Trade/Remote Control, and is the first album credited to the Johnsons since 2010’s Swanlights. ANOHNI also released a solo album, Hopelessness, in 2016.
To coincide with the announcement, ANOHNI has shared lead single ‘It Must Change’ alongside a video starring British model and activist Munroe Bergdorf and directed by Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard. “Munroe Bergdorf has done so much service for British society,” ANOHNI said. “She always impresses me with her articulate grace. Munroe’s dignity and ethical courage are a guiding light.”
ANOHNI and the Johnsons – ‘It Must Change’
ANOHNI began working on My Back Was a Bridge for You to Cross in 2022 with longtime collaborator Jimmy Hogarth. The collaborative songwriting process involved ANOHNI bringing in lyrical ideas, and the pair sketching out demos with ANOHNI on piano and Hogarth playing guitar. They then assembled a studio band included Leo Abrahams, Chris Vatalaro, Sam Dixon and string arranger Rob Moose to record the album.
“I’ve been thinking a lot about Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On. That was a really important touchstone in my mind,” ANOHNI said of her forthcoming album in a statement. “Some of these songs respond from the present day to global and environmental concerns first voiced in popular music over 50 years ago.”
She continued: “I want the record to be useful. I learned with HOPELESSNESS that I can provide a soundtrack that might fortify people in their work, in their activism, in their dreaming and decision-making. I can sing of an awareness that makes others feel less alone, people for whom the frank articulation of these frightening times is not a source of discomfort but a cause for identification and relief. I want the work to be useful, to help others move with dignity and resilience through these conversations we are now facing.”