Two American sisters are hoping to create some more success for themselves with a new album and UK tour which includes a date in Sheffield.
The Pierces – Allison and her younger sister Catherine – were on the verge of splitting up when they finally achieved the success they craved with fourth album You & I.
After sales of more than 100,000 copies sent it to number four in the charts and TV appearances ranging from from Paul O’Grady to Later... With Jools Holland, it was time for the follow-up.
However, Creation was only released at the start of the month.
Catherine, who turned 37 last week, says: “It was supposed to be out ages ago.”
However after six months’ work last year, working with a producer with ‘lots of talent and a great reputation’, it was rejected by their record lable.
Allison, aged 39, says: “It went well at first. It’s hard to put your finger on why something doesn’t sound right, but you know it doesn’t. It didn’t have the energy or the emotion or life that we wanted it to have, and the label agreed.
“Working out what to do took a while.”
Catherine, went travelling, to South America for a time, where she took part in an ayahuasca ceremony, sampling the brew known for its divinatory, hallucinogenic effects.
She says: “We all felt like we were in a really delicate place. We were scared we were going to get dropped, scared we hadn’t written the right songs, and then we did ayahuasca and it put everything in perspective.
“It’s hard to talk about the experience, hard to describe, but it’s given me a whole new perspective.
“People get so caught up with career, with money, with future, and I had a lot of anxiety about those things, but during the first ceremony, I realised I have a home, I have loved ones, I am generally happy, and it took the pressure off all of that.”
She says realising the album was not the ‘be-all-and-end-all’ of her life enabled her to actually concentrate on re-recording the songs they had written and do justice to it.
And Catherine took on the majority of the song-writing behind Creation, penning eight of its 13 tracks instead of the more usual even split the pair have enjoyed in the past.
Allison admits personal issues took a toll on her song writing.
She says: “I didn’t have anywhere to live, so I was wandering around a lot and I was heartbroken.”
“Being emotionally centred is important to writing songs. I needed to feel more settled, although most of my songs have come out of heartbreak, or out of some sort of emotional suffering, so I should be used to it.
“Writing those songs for the new album, I Can Feel, Elements, An Honest Man, Monsters and The One I Want, was at least very cathartic, almost like therapy.
“I think those songs are like little gems, like gifts I’ve been given. So if it takes a while to get to them, through a load of pain, then I’m willing to pay the price.
“Listening back, I think everything we’ve been through for this album was all worth it.”
* The Pierces play The Leadmill on Saturday, September 20. For tickets, priced £16, visit www.theleadmill.co.uk