Amy Helm sought what she calls a “circular sound” for her new album. The 10 tracks of This Too Shall Light, releasedSeptember 21, 2018 on Yep Roc Records, are marked by streaks of Americana, country, blues, and gospel, and the kinds of four-part harmonies that can burst open a melody and close the loop of an octave.
Produced by Grammy-winning producer and songwriter Joe Henry, This Too Shall Light comprises a diverse range of influences. Although a profound songwriter herself, Helm and Henry jointly arranged powerful new versions of songs including Rod Stewart’s “Mandolin Wind,” Allen Toussaint’s “Freedom for the Stallion,” and the Milk Carton Kids’ “Michigan.” The title track in particular, written by Hiss Golden Messenger’s MC Taylor and Josh Kaufman (Josh Ritter, Bob Weir, Craig Finn),is a brilliant summation of the record’s sound and spirit — a positive and proactive manipulation of the old adage that “This too shall pass.”
The daughter of The Band’s legendary drummer and singer Levon Helm and singer/songwriter Libby Titus, Helm began her musical career as a founding member of the alt-country collective Ollabelle and later served as a backing musician in her father’s Midnight Ramble Band.
While This Too Shall Light is only Helm’s second album under her own name, it serves as a comprehensive portrait covering her life’s journeys and recoveries; They’re the stories that, no matter where they take her, seem to end and begin in the same place like a circle.