Holly Johnson announces ‘Europa’
First new album in 14 years released September 29
Single: ‘Follow Your Heart’ out July 27
Live: UK Tour announced for October
Holly Johnson has today announced details of his first new album in fourteen years. ‘Europa’ will be released on September 29 via his Pleasuredome label, the first taster of which, ‘Follow Your Heart’, premieres today, and is available to pre-order on iTunes from midnight tonight.
The digital EP, featuring one of the final remixes by Frankie Knuckles (and Eric Kupper), is out July 27 alongside a limited-edition coloured vinyl the week before. Surrounding the launch of ‘Europa’, the Frankie Goes to Hollywood front-man will also embark on his first solo tour – the last being with FGTH in 1987 – featuring a London show at Indigo2 on October 28. Further single and live plans will be unveiled shortly.
Click here to pre-order the album in its various formats, including a couple of limited editions. More information on the track listing, packaging, etc will come soon. You’ll be able to pre-order the album from iTunes at the start of August.
Click here to pre-order the 12” single, where you’ll also see there’s a VERY limited signed and hand numbered test pressing. Get them while you can!
‘Europa’, is a euphoric, often-electronic-led return, celebrating love, dance…and chronicling exactly what Holly Johnson has been up to these last fifteen years. The title track began life with Vangelis in Paris over a decade ago, where Johnson – a ‘Blade Runner’ obsessive – teamed up with the legendary composer in an underground studio; a converted concrete bunker on the edge of the Bois de Boulogne, which had been originally designed for Hitler’s occupation. Some twenty four years later, Holly and Vangelis, together with long-time collaborator Mark Ralph, finally finished it off. Elsewhere, the record features contributions from Roxy Music’s Phil Manzanera, Vini Reilly of Durutti Column, and the late, great Frankie Knuckles, remixing first single ‘Follow Your Heart’ alongside house legend Eric Kupper (Knuckles also remixed Holly’s first ever solo single, 1989’s ‘Love Train’). ‘Follow Your Heart’ is about that need to give yourself a push, on an album full of positivity – much to the surprise of its writer. “I really am the archetypal miseryguts,” says Holly. “The songs are full of encouragement because really I’m singing to myself, to get rid of that black dog and get me out my shell.”
And so here he is – with a new album, tour, and a passion for the music that first transported him from 1960s, working-class Liverpool to one of the pop stars of his generation. Holly Johnson describes ‘Europa’ as “a kind of retrospective of me as a songwriter. It’s the product of a life in pop music. And one thing you learn is that, every time you make a record, it might be the last one. So you’d better make it good, you’d better make it positive, and you’d better enjoy it.”
August 15 Henley-On-Thames Rewind South
August 31 Cheshire Rewind North
October 18 Bristol O2 Academy
October 19 Birmingham Birmingham Institute
October 21 Glasgow O2 ABC Glasgow
October 22 Newcastle O2 Academy Newcastle
October 24 Liverpool Liverpool EchoTwo
October 25 Manchester Manchester Academy 2
October 28 London Indigo2