Saint Jude

City: South London
Country: UK
Genre: Electronic
Styles: Experimental, Ambient
on hashbrandnew.com since August 16, 2020

Bio

Saint Jude is an alias of South London producer and songwriter Jude Woodhead. Jude's self titled EP was released in 2019 on Slow Dance records, containing a blend of rolling ambient pop music and off-kilter indie tunes.

Announcing his second EP, Bodies Of Water (out physically and digitally 16th April 2021) with new single “Altitude” on 18th March, Saint Jude also teases that his debut album is on the horizon. Alongside this EP, it marks the beginning of a partnership between his long-term UK label and collective Slow Dance Records and US label tmwrk (Grady, Molly Payton, Herizen, Onyx Collective).

For an artist as many-layered and sonically acrobatic as Saint Jude, every new release is somewhat of a surprise: the South London-based producer Jude Woodhead moves rapidly from strength to strength. Sonically, Jude’s music is intricate, chameleonic; his talents as a producer were inspired by sample-based greats like The Avalanches, Madlib and Four Tet, so there’s always a richness and variety to his sounds. Influenced by club music and jazz, there are also nods to contemporary masters like Radiohead, King Krule, Mount Kimbie, Jamie XX and Nicholas Jaar.

There’s a unique energy to the way he works, which could be a symptom of his forced departure from making conventional dance music; during his late teens, Jude developed tinnitus which prevented him from being able to go to clubs, gigs, or play live. Rather than killing his passions, it made him far more focused, taking his sound away from the strobes and vast spaces of club settings, and into the confined spaces of his own bedroom.

In catholic lore, Saint Jude is the patron saint of lost causes; however, his musical namesake is far from that. Saint Jude has overcome trepidation to create highly focused work that teems with bright colours, shimmering textures and raw emotion at every turn. After his diagnosis, Saint Jude emerged with a new project: his first sermon was a self-titled five track EP, released in October of 2019 on Slow Dance.

Compared to the music he initially released under ‘Jude Woodhead’, Saint Jude has a fully formed, rich and distinctive sound. He has evolved to depend on his own assured vocals and inputs original guitar lines; the result of an artist spending too many months spent in sample-clearing purgatory. Lockdown, he notes, has definitely affected his process: ‘I’m not really writing songs as much about my life at the moment, I’m more writing about wider themes, or making up stories and characters and writing about their lives’.

Slow Dance is a label Jude has been with from the beginning, playing their second ever party in 2015. It was founded in 2016 and remains a profoundly DIY label and collective made up of artists, musicians, designers, A&R scouts, managers and filmmakers. The collaborative nature of the organisation means that lines between art, music and industry sensibilities are blurred and evolved into something entirely new. Alongside the Bodies of Water EP, Jude and some of his writer and visual artist friends have produced a zine, which fits in with the label’s pro-multimedia ethos. “Altitude” also has a video made up of footage Jude shot during a road trip back from Italy when Europe was going into lockdown in March last year. 

Source [Spotify]