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Acclaimed US Singer-Songwriter Amigo The Devil Releases New Single From Forthcoming Album

By Stevie Connor. Photo Credit: Alison Clarke @ Cliqmo Photography.

The acclaimed singer-songwriter Amigo the Devil (aka Danny Kiranos) has today released a brand new single entitled ‘The Mechanic’. It is the second song to be lifted from his third studio album, ‘Yours Until The War Is Over’, which is set for release on 23rd February 2024 and contains ATD’s most disarming and inspired collection of songs to date.‘The Mechanic’ sees hauntingly soft strings and Spanish-style acoustic guitar complement lyrics that reflect on a broken relationship, searching for a happiness lost to the painful reality of time spent together.

Bonded through both love and trauma, the lyrics are profound in their depth yet simplicity: Like a house that’s on fire but you love how it feels, So you throw in the memories to feed it.The more you let go, the harder it is to leave.“The song is in line with realizing your own flaws, but coming from the opposite side to my previous single ‘Cannibal Within', where you are the one causing a lot of the imbalance,” explains Kiranos.

The accompanying video for ‘The Mechanic’ reveals intimate insights behind the making of the new album. Created in a basement bar-turned-studio in the middle of Tennessee, the video shows the bare-bones of ATD’s recording process, from scribbling lyrics on the pages of a journal, to the natural dynamics with songwriting partner and guitarist David Talley, to experimenting with oddball percussion from his homemade recording den.

Yours Until The War Is Over’ is the first studio album by ATD that was entirely recorded, produced and engineered in-house, with the collaborative nature of the new recording process shining throughout. Kiranos’ songs serve as cinematic vignettes that thread together stories of the human condition, trauma bonding and the method of using relationships for survival, whether by addiction, doubt, death, or narcissism. All heart with no boundaries, it is an album to be experienced from beginning to end in order to recognise the perspective it offers.

The album title is a reference to the love affair between Ernest Hemingway and his nurse Agnes von Kurowsky in the closing months of World War I, a (trauma) bond that developed after the future novelist was severely wounded in Italy just after becoming a Red Cross volunteer at the age of 18. She would sometimes end her love letters by writing “Yours until the war is over,” a sign-off that proved prophetic, her ultimate rejection devastating and scarring him.

The new album coincides with ATD’s latest US tour, his second since a successful summer 2023 European visit (his first with a full band) to promote 2021’s darkly romantic and hauntingly melodic ‘Born Against’ album. Earning acclaim from UK publications.

In the vast realm of modern folk and alternative rock, Amigo The Devil is an artist who channels a voice of unsettling beauty and raw truth. Splicing alarming honesty with personal realizations, his narratives carry weight, wisdom and wit. Nestled within the corners of Amigo the Devil’s haunting melodies and daring experimentation lies a tale as profound as the dirges he sings. 

With a brilliant mind, full soul and a penchant for the obscure, Amigo the Devil’s songwriting harkens back to a more brutal state of songwriting. His songs are greatly influenced by the honesty of Leonard Cohen, the creativity of Tom Waits and the ruthlessness of Chavela Vargas. Rather than imitate, he identifies with their authentic disregard of consequences when it comes to songwriting and releasing music. Amigo the Devil is not polished or clean – he’s all heart, with reckless abandon. His understanding of emotions is deep and instinctual, choosing to embrace one’s flaws instead of trying to change them. 

The son of a Greek father and Spanish mother, Amigo the Devil – otherwise known as Danny Kiranos – is a first-generation American from South Florida. He came of age in downtown Miami during the mid-1980s when the city was equal parts thriving, diverse and dirty. With a lust for travel and unusual experiences, Kiranos bounced around from city to city – 16 in total from LA to Europe – before he finally found a home in Texas. It was there, in Austin, that Amigo the Devil took root. 

Kiranos spent significant portions of his earlier career embracing an almost nomadic lifestyle, absorbing tales from the underworld and penning songs about other wandering or lost souls. These stories, from the tragic to the comedic, found their way into his lyrics, and  gained a steady fellowship of fans along the way.

Amigo the Devil’s first full-length album, Volume 1, released as an amalgamation of three earlier EPs. Laden with stories of his travels, relationships, and existential musings, the collection gave birth to ballads both mournful and satirical, including “Hell and You,” “I Hope Your Husband Dies” and “One Kind of People.” In 2018, Amigo the Devil released a proper studio album, Everything is Fine, which brought forth chantable ditties like “Hungover in Jonestown” as well as his dubiously introspective, “Cocaine and Abel.” 

His first works showed the promise of the masterful songwriter Amigo the Devil has become. Early releases were dominated by dark tales of serial killers and the macabre mixed into a layered, deeper meaning. In themselves, the songs are genius. But as he grew as a songwriter the music grew with it, leading into a turning point that began shifting the tides for Kiranos’ songs. “For the first time,” he mentioned in an interview, “I began seeing the light at the end of this dark, winding tunnel I’d been singing about.”

This newfound perspective became evident in his 2021 album, Born Against, released under his independent label Liars Club Records. The music, while retaining its eerie charm, began to venture into territories of acceptance and redemption. The raw experimentation and flirtation with unconventional instruments all mirrored Amigo the Devil’s journey of self-discovery and growth. Born Against garnered critical acclaim from Rolling Stone, Consequence, No Depression and American Songwriter, which described Amigo the Devil as “an artist who gives full reign to intrigue and intellect in equal measure.” 

The next chapter of Amigo the Devil continues with the February 2024 release of Yours Until the War is Over – his most disarming and singular work to date. The first taste arrives with “Cannibal Within,” a song that descends to the depth of the human experience. Self-produced and recorded in a backwoods bar-turned-studio, the banjo-driven track speaks to honesty without pity. Experimental percussion – like the repetitive dropping of a pick, bottle tinks and the clacking of toy teeth – immerses the listener within an internal dialogue of self-doubt and insecurities, personified.

The 13 tracks that make up Yours Until the War is Over together weave themes of relatable self destruction and trauma bonding with arresting authenticity. Riddled with obscure literary references – akin to Kiranos’ maniac reading habit – the album proves that this whole Amigo the Devil thing isn’t some true crime niche. Yours Until the War is Over is a songwriter's record. 

Similar to Waits and Cohen, Amigo the Devil embodies the truest form of an artist in this new work. Inspired by a mantra adopted from unexpected, late-night advice, he doesn’t have to “be the story to tell the story.” Songwriting doesn’t have to be linear, or biographical. 

“I don’t write songs for a purpose. The beauty lies in how people take them – the magic happens between the songwriter and the listener in that shared moment,” explains Kiranos. “Once this new record comes out, it’s not mine anymore. And that’s why we keep writing records, because then we have something that’s only ours again, even if just for a little while. Like wounded wildlife, you nurse them back to health and then you have to let them go.”

In a world filled with fleeting tunes and temporary stars, artists like Amigo the Devil are the reminders of the power of storytelling – of music’s age-old role in narrating human emotion. Kiranos seems to be on a lifelong journey, not just of personal discovery, but of reminding us all of the roots, the rawness and the reality that music can offer. 

Despite his growing notoriety, Amigo the Devil remains enigmatic. He isn't one to bask in the limelight, choosing once again to let his art speak for itself.

The Mechanic Artwork : Painting By Joan Lalucat


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