Cathal Coughlan, who fronted Irish cult band Microdisney in the '80s and Fatima Mansions in the '90s, is set to release new solo album Song Of Co-Aklan on March 26 via Dimple Discs. (Preorder.) It's his first new music in 10 years, and finds him backed by regular collaborators the Grand Necropolitan Quartet who include drummer Nick Allum (The Fatima Mansions, The Apartments), guitarist James Woodrow (Gavin Bryars Ensemble) and cellist Audrey Riley (who's worked with The Sundays, The Smiths, Nick Cave, The Cure, The Go-Betweens and many more). The album also features contributions from Cathal's former Microdisney bandmate and current High Llamas' frontman Sean O'Hagan (Microdisney/High Llamas), Luke Haines (The Auteurs / Black Box Recorder), Rhodri Marsden (Scritti Politti) Aindrías Ó Gruama (Fatima Mansions), Cory Gray (The Delines) and Dublin singer-songwriter Eileen Gogan. You can pre-order it here.

We've got the premiere of "Owl In The Parlour," a dark and prowling number that features Rhodri Marsden and  stalks the line between soaring rock and cabaret, a line Cathal's powerful voice knows well. The subject matter, though, is a little more unusual, much like the domestic animals who are its subject. "This song is, in part, a survey of the options in personal couture, animal husbandry and ‘inexpensive' domestic staffing which are now available to the spry middle-aged man in this era of global communication," says Cathal. "In this gilded age, we are simultaneously interlinked and mutually repelled as never before, whether we live in remote settlements in war-torn parts of the world, or in the mosaic of postage-stamp-sized semi-detached fortresses and gargantuan fulfilment hubs that is the English Hinterland in 2021."

The "Owl in the Parlour" video was directed Andy Golding (who you may know from '80s-era band The Wolfhounds) and you can watch that below.

Cathal Coughlan - Song of Co-Aklan (cover)

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