When Jess Williamson fell in love, the heavens parted. Cosmic Wink, the Austin-based singer-songwriter’s third record, looks to the skies, but also turns inward. The album details a series of personal changes in Williamson’s life, including a new relationship, a move to Los Angeles, and the death of her beloved dog, Frankie. Produced by her boyfriend and collaborator Shane Renfro of the band RF Shannon, Cosmic Wink is a stellar rumination on time; the present, the future, and what happens when it finally runs out.
Williamson recently brought the lush, other-wordly sounds of Cosmic Wink to Paste, playing three songs: “White Bird,” “I See The White,” and “Love on the Piano.” The album’s first single, “I See the White,” is a hazy and captivating reflection on Frankie’s passing. “I see the white all around her eyes,” Williamson sings, referencing the graying of Frankie’s fur.
“Seeing [Frankie] grow older was sort of this physical manifestation of the passing of time,” Williamson explained. “[I was] thinking about love and time and death and life, and everything in between.”
Cosmic Wink was created in close collaboration with Renfro, and it makes perfect sense that the couple would complement each other as writing partners. “I always thought that Shane was the best and most talented musician I knew,” Williamson gushed. “I just felt really lucky that he wanted to have such a heavy hand in making this album. It felt really natural.”
It’s no surprise that themes of sex and love permeate Cosmic Wink, but Williamson clarified that the record’s closing track, “Love on the Piano,” is not, in fact, meant to be literal. “My mom thought that this song was about having sex in various locations,” she laughed. “It’s not about that.”
Watch Jess Williamson’s entire Cosmic Wink Paste session right here.