Hannah Georgas’ Fourth Album Releases ‘All That Emotion’

“Over time, songs take on new meanings as you grow and you move forward,” says Hannah Georgas. Reflecting on the open and close of a relationship and emerging from its heartache, the Canadian artist delicately shuffles through all the pent up emotions on fourth album All That Emotion.

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Written following Georgas last release, 2016’s For Evelyn, at a time when the artist found herself motioning through some major shifts in her life—a breakup, switch in record companies, and a move to Toronto—all left a profound impact on All That Emotion.

“Writing has been this really therapeutic process for me,” says Georgas. “I might feel really strongly about something or be inspired to write about something that makes me feel like I have something to say, and then it will take on a new shape and new meaning as time goes on.” 

Traversing different angles of her personal life, the album’s cover art is even pulled from Georgas’ own family photo albums, showing her father diving into a lake at a resort near her childhood home—an image Georgas says parallels art in it’s “calm confidence of expressing yourself without the thought of consequence, regardless of anyone watching.”

Working with The National’s Aaron Dessner at his Hudson Valley New York studio, Long Pond, along with percussionist Jason Treuting, pianist Thomas Bartlett, and drummer James McAllister, helped fill any sonic cracks on All That Emotion. Georgas first met Dessner in 2015 prior to releasing For Evelyn—and later found herself on tour with The National for the band’s I Am Easy to Find tour in 2019.

By the end of 2017, Dessner and Georgas reconnected, exchanged some music, and eventually scheduled time to work on the album in 2018. “I am just a huge fan of his production and his songwriting,” says Georgas. “He has a way of making things sound so lush, but spacious at the same time. This record sounds very organic, but we incorporated a lot of electronic elements as well and really wanted to make my vocals have depth and be the focal point of the song.” 

Toiling in past mistakes, overthinking the evolution of relationships, and finding resilience, Georgas sifts through all of her emotions and breaks them down to reach some understanding. “I have a tendency to really overanalyze and worry too much about that stuff,” shares Georgas. “It’s all connected, where all that comes from. I’m such a sensitive person sometimes, and it gets the best of me for sure.”

On All That Emotion, Georgas’ enchanting vocals gently motion through each monologue and enveloping instrumentation. Opening on “That Emotion,” a song Georgas wrote about a chance meeting with an ex, introduces an unraveling of a love that was not meant to be, before shifting into “Easy,” a track Georgas admits is her favorite, yet bares the uneasy and painful revelation of Your love was never to be.

Whenever I hear it back now, it actually takes me back to that pain, like dark figures and smoke, and just reflects it in a really good way,” says Georgas. “I think it’s a good testament to when you hear something and you’re like, ‘wow, that just brings me back to that moment where it did really hurt.’ It really was coming from a place of pain and trying to move forward. There’s hope in that song as well. It’s like understanding what the situation is and realizing like, you can’t go back to it.”

Dreamsdeciphers more of the complexities of love in lyrics You make me feel like I deserve this / You make me feel like it’s worth it / Didn’t know what I wanted until I wanted you / Didn’t know what I needed until I needed you, through the pleading of “Pray It Away” and the denial and uncertainty on “Someone I Don’t Know” through “Same Mistakes.” Georgas goes further down the pensive rabbit hole ruminating on the dreamy delivery of “Just a Phase,” which offers a more positive tone amid All That Emotion‘s melancholic theme. 

“It’s the feeling when you step out of the way of your fear and your doubt,” says Georgas. ”I do struggle with anxiety and stress and I know when I am completely free of that, those feelings, I feel like I should like really accomplish a lot. You feel kind of invincible, so that song expresses those feelings.”

Welcoming a feeling of liberation, singing Why does it feel so good to be free, All That Emotion closes on the beguiling drift of “Cruel.”

Hannah Georgas (Photo: Zachary Hertzman)

Every piece of music Georgas has crafted from her 2012 self-titled debut through For Evelyn has been a reflection into her life, and All That Emotion, she says, is less about closure and more about understanding all the changes.

“It’s hard for it to go away,” says Georgas. “When you release songs—even when you play them live—they find their new like meaning, and I find like new ways to feel inspired by them. I guess in a way, some of this stuff has been a bit of closure to, with some of the breakup songs or just understanding myself more.”

After some years living in Vancouver, Georgas made the move to Toronto four years ago, which was a big shift, while also working through a breakup and sorting out a new record deal.

“There were a lot of things that were going on in my personal and work life around the time when I started writing All That Emotion,” says Georgas, who recently moved to another home in Toronto. “I’m in a pretty good place right now. I think a big reason why I wanted to move to was to kind of get more clear with the space where I want to create. I lived in that apartment in Toronto for four years, which was really great, but I also felt like it had its restrictions for me to like work and have a good creative flow.”

Georgas adds, “I actually wrote my whole record in that apartment for All That Emotion, but the space that I have now, I can play my piano and not feel like anybody’s listening to me upstairs. I feel like it’s a very real time right now. It’s a very crazy time with the pandemic. A lot is changing, but I do feel like I feel really fortunate to be able to stay home, stay safe, and still have a way to work.”

All That Emotion is Georgas purely demonstrating how she has always approached her craft—from all the emotions—and is resonating in life today.

“It all comes from a place of feeling like you need to say something and express something,” she says. “It’s an interesting time for sure. It’s been interesting trying to untether. Every day is kind of a question mark.”

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