The Scottish songwriter continues her streak of meditative indie-folk with the brand new EP In My Nature. This subsequent release follows her debut project 123° East out earlier this year and sees Rosie H Sullivan enter a new era, with a collection of songs each exploring subjects close to her heart.
“I’ve traded wildflowers and country roads, for bus lanes and tramways and cobblestones,” Sullivan whispers in opener ‘Wildflowers and Cobblestones’. Co-written with Ross Hamilton, the track gives a glimpse into the duality of the life Sullivan leads, leaving behind the rural seascapes of her family home to embark on a bustling life in the city, and the contrasts that come with that move. A continuation from Sullivan’s ‘Expectations’ lifted from 123° East, the song reaches further into ideas of growing up, time passing and the ebbs and flows that life brings.
The self-proclaimed power feminist anthem, ‘Only A Woman’, co-written with Katie Sutherland, explores the intricacies of being a woman in the 21st century. “I’m only a woman after all,” she sings. “I will never fit.” Sullivan ups the ante with the sonics of the track, crafting one of her most powerful arrangements yet and drawing similarities to the stylistics of Phoebe Bridgers and super group Boygenius, particularly with its hazily warm atmosphere and gossamer vocals that sweep over layered drums.
Previous single ‘Fragments’ blends beautifully poetic lyrics seamlessly into a blanket of angelic melodies – an ode to her love for the highlands of Scotland whilst ‘Chapters’, with alluring nods to Fiest’s timeless ‘1234’, is about fulfilling each day, celebrating the ups and downs in our lives as well the simple things we shouldn’t take for granted.
And finally, encapsulating the true essence of Sullivan’s adoration for her hometown is ‘Timeless’, a vulnerable conclusion to the EP accompanied with spoken word by Scottish kayaking pioneer, and family friend, the late Hamish Gow.
“In his final years, a close friend of my father’s passed onto us some old cinefilm that showed them kayaking around Scottish islands in the 1960s. This was created into a film, which Hamish narrated over, recalling the adventures of his youth. Part of this recording now sits nestled within the bridge of Timeless. It’s a big moment for me, and my family to have Hamish’s voice out there, and never forgotten.”
In My Nature explores the world through Sullivan’s lens, words and rhymes for others to hold, cherish and listen to. “It is in my nature to write these words and songs and hold them in my heart, I’ll also be found, never too far from nature, in any case, by a stream, in the woods, in the long grass, by the sea.” Her vision is crystal clear, and the natural-born storyteller abilities have never vibrated stronger than in this moment. “This is me, and it has been since I came to be and will continue to be for as long as I live.”
Sullivan’s breakthrough came in 2021 with her debut single, ‘So It Is’, which she captured in just one take in her parent’s garden. Released in demo form, the single has racked up onwards of 600,000 streams on Spotify. In addition, her recent sold out stint at Glasgow’s King Tut’s, appearance at this year’s Celtic Connections plus her own Scottish tour is appropriately leading her down the right path to becoming one of the most prestigious songwriters of our age.