Johanna Warren

SXSW Presents: Johanna Warren

*photo by Allyce Andrew

Most people think of music as a means of release or expression, and both of those are very much so true. But for songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Johanna Warren, music is something even more - it's like a natural energy. “Music is vibration; it's a direct way to affect matter," says Warren. "A song is a way to journey into places of discord and then resolve back into harmony.” Warren's articulation of this is crystal clear through her delicate folk compositions, each taking some sort of dark and haunting turn in a way that plays off her understanding of mysticism, occultism and human existence.

These themes run deep in her songs, but also in how she visually represents them. Her music videos often carry the same motifs, often showcased through physical movement. Warren has even translated this into the basis of a label, founding Spirit House Records in 2016. The label is home to many radical and fluid minds who find themselves identifying in some way or another as witches, healers and free spirits. One of the first Spirit House releases happened to be the first of her Gemini albums with the second, Gemini II, coming out just a couple days ago. Both find themselves rooted in personal mythology and occult symbolism, pushed through moody melodies and tones. 

Johanna Warren's songs are introspective and compound, making for an entrancing live production.


Johanna Warren unveils new video for "Everyone I Know"

We stumbled upon this new video by Brooklyn/Portland Johanna Warren (ex Sticklips) and were taken aback by its delicate beauty and suggestive simplicity. Currently in the West Coast for a few gigs, Johanna is a regular performer at Manhattan's Rockwood Music Hall.


Sticklips' Johanna Warren announces solo debut LP "Fates"

Johanna Warren is having a busy year: she's been on the road as a singer with Iron & Wine, recorded with Natalie Merchant and Elvis Perkins, and is about to self-release her debut solo record, "Fates," a collection of nine songs recorded over the course of three days in a haunted attic in upstate New York. For the last six years Warren has fronted the band Sticklips, an experimental project drawing on the eclectic influences of its shifting personnel. The 24-year-old songwriter's debut solo album is stripped to the bone yet full and spacious, entirely acoustic yet lush with eery ambience. Influenced heavily by the early recordings of Elliott Smith, Warren strove to create an intimate sonic universe with very sparse arrangements, relying solely on the strength of her songwriting. - (photo credit: Gretchen Heinel) - (as posted in The Deli's Open Blog - post your band's entries, videos, and Mp3s here). The Deli's NYC Open Blog is powered by The Music Building.