Based in Edinburgh, Scottish indie folk-pop act Withered Hand is the solo project of singer/songwriter Dan Willson. A veteran of multiple bands in late-'90s and early-2000s Edinburgh music scene, Willson began his solo career after receiving an acoustic guitar from his wife as a 30th birthday gift. Migrating slowly from bandmate to solo artist, he began singing and writing his own loose, jangly songs, eventually releasing his debut EP, Religious Songs, under the moniker Withered Hand. Finding immediate success with the new format, Willson released a second EP in 2009 before teaming up with legendary American producer Kramer to make his first full-length album, Good News, in 2010. With his ragged tenor and often lo-fi, acoustic-based sound, Willson has come to represent a certain standard in the U.K. D.I.Y. scene and was a part of the Fife-based Fence Collective with acts like King Creosote and James Yorkston. Two more Withered Hand EPs appeared in 2012 before Willson returned to the studio to record his follow-up LP. His second full-length, New Gods, was released in early 2014 by Fortuna Pop and Slumberland. The record was produced by Tony Doogan (Mountain Goats, Belle and Sebastian) and features help from Black Tambourine's Pam Berry, Eugene Kelly of the Vaselines, and members of Belle and Sebastian and Frightened Rabbit.
Selected press for last album New Gods:
“New Gods is a record whose amiably DIY musical quality is perfectly matched with a lyrical tone which is at once tuned to a laser-like precision and helped no end by a voice which sounds agonised but still hopeful at every turn” ***** The Scotsman
“A triumphant return” 7.5/10 The 405
“Endlessly loveable stuff” NME 7/10
“Beautifully constructed lyrical frameworks … on this banjo-tinged brand of Caledonian gospel” – **** MOJO
“The UK’s best lyricist” – King Creosote, in The Independent
“Killer melodies … wobbly folk grooves … tunes full of warm, woozy sing-song charm” – ‘Artist to Watch’ – Rolling Stone – 2011