FINK – ‘Beauty In Your Wake’

Track By Track: Fink discusses each track from their eighth album, Beauty In Your Wake

Fink cover
Album cover for Beauty In Your Wake by Fink courtesy of the artist

Reformed and revived, seasoned alt-folk trio FINK has released their open-hearted and instinctive new album Beauty In Your Wake. Almost three decades since his emergence as a Ninja Tune electronic artist, renowned singer-songwriter Fin Greenall reunites with the original trio for FINK’s eighth album, which features songs of honesty, patience, and trust. Returning to England’s scenic South West coast from his Berlin home, Greenall, along with bandmates Tim Thornton and Guy Whittaker, delivers ten intimate, stripped-back tracks produced by Grammy Award-winning producer Sam Okell. Released on vinyl, CD, cassette, and digital formats via Greenall’s R’COUP’D label, Beauty In Your Wake marks a period of grounded self-assurance and creative kinship for the band.

1. ‘What Would You Call Yourself’

From the moment I penned this one it was obvious to me and the band that this would open the record. It’s a philosophical one, about identity. Self-identity, without any outside forces pressuring you into any boxes. The third verse is a story from my own childhood, where I invented a whole army in my imagination under my house. I just found this topic somehow connecting with me on this song.

2. ‘The Only Thing That Matters’

I tried to teach myself to let go on this one and just write the song that wanted to be written under my hands and in my songbook, without thinking too hard. Just write the song inside of these chords. I wanted to write an optimistic moment, a lesson, a re-assurance. I guess the message for me in this one is live life with grace, if you can. We really embraced the studio on this one with bowing acoustic guitars, fiddle and mandolin.

3. ‘Be Forever Like A Curse’

Originally written in 2022 for a documentary soundtrack (All You See – Dir. Niki Padidar), all of the lyrics are inspired by the characters in the documentary. Sometimes just direct lifts from their dialogue with stories of immigration and forced migration. People fitting into generally well-meaning and welcoming European cultures but still dealing with these hard landings where your identity shifts from being the person you were to just being “immigrant” or “refugee” or “foreigner.” It’s about the search for home when home is somewhere you can never return to.

4. ‘It’s Like You Ain’t Mine No More’

We were very eager to embrace the vibe of the original trio, and no-one else, locked in a Cornish chapel for a month with some great engineers and Sam Okell. This track totally sums that up. Every idea we had with the music had to be generated by us so, if you want a cello part and you don’t have a cello, then what? Take some strings off an acoustic guitar, resin up that bow to within an inch of its life and go for it! This track is the DIY ethos in us at its peak.

5. ‘Follow You Down’

We wanted to think about a record that would come after our two other, super-fast live studio records Perfect Darkness and Hard Believer. On Perfect Darkness there is a track we wrote in a hurry, called ‘Warm Shadow’ and when I jumped on this riff, I knew that I really wanted to write like a companion piece for that track. The riff came from a trip to India and I married it with a totally folky turnaround. It’s a song about raindrops. I was sitting on my roof in the rain one day and just got lost in my thoughts.

6. ‘I Don’t See You As The Others Do’

It’s a straight up worship song. When you find your Goddess, you don’t dig too deep into the negative sides, you just focus on the stuff you need in her. I think the true meaning of this one will reveal itself over the next few years. Guy went to town with the bassline on this one. He walks around this awesome descending chord structure that was originally all backing vocals and then we blossom into a fractured kick at the end.

7. ‘One Last Gift’

I sang into the hole of my nylon guitar through my effects to get this kinda Thom Yorke-alike vocal flow. Tim came with a grooving riff and a flowing rhythm and Guy pulled out his 90’s rave trousers for a kinda throbbing rave bass line. Somehow this all fits. Like with all of the recordings for this album, I really didn’t want to think too hard about it. This song didn’t get re-written or re-edited or overworked. I wrote this beautiful song, sent it to the boys, and then we recorded it in the chapel, as simple as it should be. Just write what is inside you and not what you think you need to.

8. ‘Don’t Forget To Leave’

I don’t know where I picked up this advice, about leaving. I think personally it’s a sign of adulthood, a sign of grace, and of positive control. Its simplicity, but it’s also strength. Pretty much everything we tried to put on top of this song failed, so it came out very basic and real. Just me and the band playing it round and round. It’s about a sober life and being able to maybe look back with a cleaner perspective and realising some things.

9. ‘So We Find Ourselves’

This song is so personal. I am the first to pour hate on other writers when they have kids and end up writing the ‘baby song’ record afterwards but this is my New Dad song and that’s that! When mine grows up I hope she hears this and knows what it’s like to fall in love together. Aside from parenthood, it’s about nothing ever being the wrong thing, it’s about optimism, it’s about rags to riches to riches to rags. In the end, we get it right either way. When we recorded it, I sat live at an open piano and just belted my heart out into the piano itself to get that lovely reverb from the piano’s body.

10. ‘When I Turn This Corner’

Every FINK record has a track on it that we try and write whilst we are in the studio, trying to capture the vibe of the place. Our place on ‘Beauty In Your Wake’ is an isolated chapel in West Cornwall in October. The seasons were changing outside, we had a wood burner fully stocked and crackling away and the windows blocked out with bedding. We wrote this during rehearsals in the first week, coming back to it after the days sessions to just push it further along. I think “our dreams lie in wait for us” is a great line because they do. It’s never what you think it’s going to be. This song is about everything in my life right now.

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