Cumbria Times
A Voice of the Free Press
Jeremy Williams-Chalmers
Arts Correspondent
1:00 AM 21st February 2024

In Conversation With Christina Martin

Christina Martin
Photo: ©Peter Mettler CuPNet
Christina Martin Photo: ©Peter Mettler CuPNet
In September 2023, Canadian singer-songwriter Christina Martin launched her long-anticipated latest album, the compellingly titled Storm. Riding on the wave of four varied and vigorous singles, Storm is Martin’s most ambitious release yet. Crafted meticulously over many years, it shows Martin at her most majestic, boasting anthemic hooks and lavish orchestral strings. Yet it’s also a deeply personal piece, wearing its heart on its sleeve. It guides us down the long, winding road to recovery, taking Martin’s own experiences and making them exquisitely relatable. Aptly named, Storm is a whirling, grandiose beast that’s bombastic, beautiful, traumatic, and triumphant all at once. She is about to return to the UK for a series of shows, so we caught up with her to learn a little more.

Hi Christina! How are you?

Hi Jeremy, I'm okay, but I'm really looking forward to getting on a plane and starting the UK tour!

We absolutely loved your album, Storm. What was the loveliest feedback you received for it?

Well, that is lovely of you to say. Thank you for listening. A friend of mine drove to my house to interview me about the album. On her drive, she listened to the album from start to finish for the first time. She arrived at my house, and I got the impression that the songs made her feel quite emotional at times. The songs certainly go pretty deep for me, but it's lovely to find out that the lyrics or the music resonate with someone else.

And the strangest?

Well, I had one audience member come up to me after a performance and ask me, 'Why did you put so much instrumentation on the album?' I thought that was a strange thing to ask.

Christina Martin and Dale Murray
Photo: © Peter Mettler CuPNet
Christina Martin and Dale Murray Photo: © Peter Mettler CuPNet
You are heading over here on tour; what can we expect?

I'm touring with my guitarist, Dale Murray. What I love about touring the songs stripped down is that, no matter how big or small the venue is, there's a palpable intimacy between these songs, myself, and the audience. We'll be performing songs from the new album Storm and songs that we just really love performing from my older albums. We recorded a stripped-down album in 2019 called Wonderful Lie that is part covers (Richard Thompson, Paul Westerberg, Bob Dylan, ABBA) and originals, so we might try to perform a few from that album on this tour. 

With so much music under your belt, how do you decide how to compile your set?

I like to have a healthy mix of the newest songs, familiar songs from my catalogue, and then the songs that scare me, like a brand new song, a new cover, or a song I have not played in over a decade.

Christina Martin
Photo:©Sean Sisk
Christina Martin Photo:©Sean Sisk
How do you find audiences in the UK differ from those in Canada?

I've always felt that audiences in the UK feel quite similar to audiences in Canada. The people that come out are there to listen and connect; they are always friendly and engaged, and most people have a great sense of humour. I think there's a feeling of appreciation when an artist travels a really long distance to tour, and I've always felt that UK audiences appreciate when we are coming from overseas to perform. I'm always amazed that we can tour outside our home province and that people make the trip via car, train, and sometimes plane to hear us perform.

Is there somewhere in the UK where you haven’t managed to play yet that you hope to get to?

It would be great to play in Wales, with more shows in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

If you could work with one UK artist, who would you choose?

Depeche Mode, Annie Lennox, and Jeff Lynne.

Christina Martin
Photo: ©Cherakee Andresen
Christina Martin Photo: ©Cherakee Andresen
Canadian powerhouse musician Christina Martin is gearing up to bring her latest album Storm for her first UK headline tour since 2018. Tickets are available here. Dates below

29th February - Milton Keynes - Stables 2
1st March Alrewas - The Bank Coffeehouse
2nd March Pocklington - Pocklington Arts Centre
6th March Winchester - The Hyde Tavern
7th March London - Green Note
8th March Norwich - Grapevine at Home
9th March Ardleigh - Little Rabbit Barn
10th March High Wycombe - Kingsmead House Concert
13th March Barnoldswick - Barnoldswick Music & Arts Centre
14th March Sheffield - Café #9
15th March Alnmouth - Hindmarsh Hall
16th March Smethwick - Thimblemill Library