Canadian country singer-songwriter Tenille Townes follows her critically acclaimed 2020 album The Lemonade Stand with an EP charting the difficult but liberating act of being one’s true self. “The heart of this music comes from this season of searching that I've definitely felt myself reflectively in over the past couple of years of figuring out what it feels like to really set that mask down,” Townes tells Apple Music. “Spending more time with some of those more vulnerable and uncomfortable and personal thoughts has very much forced me to figure out that process.” Townes digs deep in these seven tracks, drawing heavily upon a period of sustained personal reflection during COVID-19 lockdown. Hit single “When’s It Gonna Happen” considers the difficulty of feeling alone when friends begin getting married, while tracks like “Villain in Me” and “The Sound of Being Alone” encourage listeners to get in tune with their own inner selves. Other highlights included “Shared Walls,” a call for unity featuring BRELAND, and the closing, Fleetwood Mac-recalling “Light in Your Eyes,” which is sure to be a staple of Townes’ live sets. Below, Townes walks Apple Music through each track on Masquerades. “When You Need It” (feat. Wrabel) “This song was the beginning of [Wrabel’s and my] friendship, which I think is so cool, because this song is exactly about that, about finding those people in our lives that we really can show up for and that we can be our honest and true selves with. To be able to say how we were doing, talking to each other through that period of not feeling fine as an entire globe—I think it's just so important to have those people in your life. And it meant a lot to get to talk about that in this song and felt like a really special beginning to the friendship.” “When’s It Gonna Happen” “I was living in my apartment by myself at the time, looking at a stack of invitations for some friends’ weddings, just going through that season of life where it feels like everyone else is finding their person. And I wanted to write something about how it can feel on the other side of that sometimes. As we were writing it, I was like, ‘Wow, this is scary, how honest this feels and how vulnerable this feels, but I'm doing it.’ And it was so therapeutic as we were working through the verses. I think being alone, sometimes it seems like you're the only other person on the planet who feels that way.” “The Sound of Being Alone” “I wrote this song over Zoom with my friends Mags Duval and Dan Wilson. And I literally was like, ‘I am going crazy in my house by myself,’ like hearing the traffic going by the window and watching the rain and the washing machine in my house. All of these things are actual things that I was talking about, the sounds in my house that were driving me insane. I think there's something so profound about the quiet, as a creative person. It's so necessary, I think, to be able to retreat into that quiet place. And I do believe that's the birthplace of so many ideas and those reflective emotions that come out of that time. It's imperative, as a writer, to be able to spend time alone.” “Villain in Me” “We've all got those voices in our own heads that we often hear the loudest. And I think wrestling with that part of ourselves was probably in the spotlight more in the past few years, as an entire culture, than maybe ever before. So I think mental health, and the ability to be able to talk to somebody and talk about how we're feeling, has become such an incredibly important thing. And it really does feel good to talk about that. So I'm so glad to have this song be a part of this collection.” “Shared Walls” (feat. BRELAND) “I've been such a fan of BRELAND's music and his spirit. He has such a joyful spirit about him that you feel like you’re friends with him without really even knowing him yet. And getting to know him through the process of this song has just been so fun. He’s so versatile. Listening to his music, he can do so many things. And I think that vulnerable part of his voice that we get to hear on this song is really exciting to hear. It's such an honor to sing with him.” “Same Road Home” “So much of imagining these songs came from this longing for the road and missing that in-person connection and unity that live music really does bring to the table. I think that's sort of in the theme of ‘Same Road Home,’ too. It's so easy to notice what makes us different. And that spirit of division is a real thing that we've all been so surrounded by this past little while. I do think that music and that collective spirit of coming together at a show is so very important for human beings to experience. And I wanted to capture all of that to put in this song, especially imagining how it could feel to sing this song all together live.” “Light in Your Eyes” “There's a line in the chorus that talks about ‘I feel a little sad about it and I couldn't tell you why.’ And I just think that the balance of holding realism and optimism at the same time, and being able to feel true about both of those things, is important and is a theme of this music. So I'm really excited this song is the closing thought.”

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