Norweigan pop phenomenon Annie releases a brand new song entitled “Corridors of Time,” a dark, meditative wash of churning synths and Annie’s always-gorgeous voice. Hitting touchpoints of Julee Cruise, Twin Peaks, Dire Straits and more, “Corridors of Time” is another standout from her forthcoming album, Dark Hearts — her first studio album in a decade — which will be released on October 16. The song focuses on being trapped in the middle of time: looking back, and looking ahead; it’s the story of a dancefloor in a theater, empty except for an older couple dancing together and a young girl dancing alone.
Dark Hearts, a pensive but quietly euphoric album about the lives we leave behind, explores the lives we can’t escape and the futures we hope to shape. Created as “the soundtrack to a film that doesn’t exist,” it’s an opulent and slightly extraordinary third album with an atmospheric palette inspired by The Wicker Man, Twin Peaks, David Cronenberg’s Crash, the evocation of the Great American road trip, and more. Dark Hearts, which was partially recorded in a country house haunted by a sprinting nun by Annie and Swedish producer Stefan Storm, is a record that is beautifully strange and strangely beautiful. It is inflected with 80s-inspired melancholy, sparkling synth lines and pulsing, reverb-filled beats.
It’s also packed with wistful reminiscences: while Annie was putting the finishing touches on it, she marked twenty years as a pop presence with a number of much-loved and critically acclaimed albums and EPs to her name. When she pressed 500 copies of her first single, she never anticipated the twists and turns that over two decades would see her recording three albums, judging on Norwegian Idol, soundtracking numerous Hollywood movies, achieving global renown, and releasing a love song to a pet ferret. Mind you, even Annie was taken aback last year when she accidentally gatecrashed her way into US Number One album, after Metro Boomin took a shine to one of her songs and sampled it, with Annie only finding out 24 hours before it was released.
Indeed, Annie’s singular candy-coated voice and brilliant songs have been consistent innovators within the pop/dance canon since her self-titled album came out in 2005. Dark Hearts is a welcome return to an artist who continues to push her craft to new places.