Jessica O’Donoghue releases ghostly new single Lullay My Heart

Embark on a mesmerizing journey through grief and redemption with “Lullay My Heart,” an ethereal composition that serves as an ode to the late Rory O’Donoghue.

The track is an ode to her late father, Rory O’Donoghue — or more precisely, a message from the man himself. Featuring the bewitching voice of the Inner West Voices Choir, (conducted by Huw Belling and Emily Irvine) Lullay My Heart is a dramatic and enchanting soundtrack to grief.

Sparse and deliberate; precisely arranged and produced by Alyx Dennison and David Trumpmanis, O’Donoghue showcases her stirring vocal abilities amid a delicately layered production. 

Jessica O’Donoghue

To adequately and sensitively explore a topic such as mental illness and suicide, one must be willing to shed all pretence, and exist wholly in the space between vulnerability and unknowingness. Jessica does this with confidence, as she navigates Lullay My Heart with an openness that suggests the song is as new to her as it is to listeners.

In a true moment of deliverance, Jessica was gifted this song through the channels that exist between the material and the unseen. There is an immense spirituality to Lullay My Heart; an otherworldly quality that spans the entire course of the track, reeling in and then releasing all at once. 

It is no secret nor surprise that Jessica is a multi-award winning performer and musician. Lullay My Heart is fit for a blockbuster film soundtrack, or the quiet hollows of one’s grieving process – a companion to navigate murky and unrelenting waters. It is a comfort and an explanation – an answer where there can never truly be one. Lullay My Heart has the consistency and connectedness of a classical hymn, but with a sense of modernity and imitability. 

Jessica O’Donoghue
Credit: Sue Stubbs

Perhaps my favourite moment of Lullay My Heart comes in the form of Ben Donoghue’s bass guitar interlude. Giving both space to breathe and prepare, a reprieve that only intensifies Jessica’s final chorus delivery.

The moment offers a new shade of Lullay My Heart; calm, explorative, and with a sense of understanding that permeates the entire piece. I’m sorry again, sings Jessica throughout the first verse, ethereal in her melodic choices, though never trite.

Jessica herself sounds as if she is visiting from elsewhere; merely a vessel for the message to travel through. 

Lullay My Heart is unmistakably beautiful, a composition of a timeless quality. Listen below. 

Review by Caitlin Norris