Ash Wednesday (album)

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Ash Wednesday
Elvis Perkins Ash Wednesday Cover.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedFebruary 20, 2007 (US)
July 9, 2007 (UK)
LabelXL Recordings
ProducerEthan Gold
Elvis Perkins chronology
Ash Wednesday
Elvis Perkins in Dearland
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic3.5/5 stars[1]
The Guardian4/5 stars[2]
Pitchfork Media(7/10)[3]
Rolling Stone3.5/5 stars[4]
The Skinny4/5 stars[5]

Ash Wednesday is the debut studio album by singer songwriter Elvis Perkins, released on February 20, 2007, on XL Recordings. It is a chronologically sequenced album of songs written before (Tracks 1 to 6) and after (Tracks 7 to 11) the death of his mother, who died on 9/11. In a 2009 interview, Perkins states that the album "[has] been made out to be bleaker than it really is, [...] there were moments of hopefulness on Ash Wednesday too."[6]

Regarding the album's title, Perkins states that it:

refers to being left on Wednesday with nothing but ash, because [my mother] died on a Tuesday – being left with ash on September 12. That was also the day my father died, September 12 [1992, of complications from AIDS]. It first occurred to me on Ash Wednesday itself – my consciousness was largely ruled by having lost my mother six months previously.[7]

"All the Night Without Love" was the lead single off the album; "Moon Woman II" appears on the Fast Food Nation soundtrack, and "While You Were Sleeping" was featured in a season 4 episode of The O.C.. The album was released on XL Records and includes backing vocals by Ariana Lenarsky, Shana Levy of indie band Let's Go Sailing, and others.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "While You Were Sleeping"
  2. "All The Night Without Love"
  3. "May Day!"
  4. "Moon Woman II"
  5. "It's Only Me"
  6. "Emile's Vietnam in the Sky"
  7. "Ash Wednesday"
  8. "The Night & The Liquor"
  9. "It's a Sad World After All"
  10. "Sleep Sandwich"
  11. "Good Friday"

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (2007) Peak
France Album Chart 193


  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ The Guardian review
  3. ^ Pitchfork Media review
  4. ^ Rolling Stone review
  5. ^ The Skinny review
  6. ^ Feature by Paul Mitchell. (March 31, 2009). "Elvis Perkins: Checking out of Heartbreak Hotel?". The Skinny. Retrieved January 14, 2012.
  7. ^ Caroline Sullivan (June 7, 2007). "All about my mother". The Guardian. London. Retrieved January 14, 2012.