It has been a while since we posted a video wall but some goodies have been arriving recently. A few are related to upcoming releases and some are just for fun.
We begin with Serious Sam Barrett and an unofficial taster for his new album Where The White Roses Grow which will be reviewed here very soon. This is a live take on the title track.
From another album that will be reviewed soon, this is Mandolin Orange and ‘The Wolves’ from the album Tides Of A Teardrop.
Skinny Lister’s new album The Story Is… will be released on March 1st. This is the official video of the title track.
We have already reviewed Anne Marie Almedal’s album Lightshadow. Here’s her version of The Cure’s ‘Lovesong’.
We will always review an album from the mighty Breabach. Here’s the single, ‘Birds Of Passage’, from their most recent album Frenzy Of The Meeting.
We missed this one when it was released last year but it’s a song that deserves a hearing. Tommy Ashby sings ‘Bowlegged’.
Seeing that Richard Thompson is our top solo artist of 2018 – Charlie Foskett thought he’d post you this Thompson penned piece of sadness from his forthcoming debut folk album collection Bugles And Bagpipes – www.foskettsfolkfactory.com – It’s almost completed and hosts many high profile guests whose magical, musical input you are just going to love – including Peter Knight and Rick Kemp (ex Steeleye) – Aidan Burke (cousin of Kevin Burke – Bothy Band and Ireland’s number celtic fiddler for the last 22 yrs – Julie Felix (duet) – Simon Care (Albion Band ) – Chris Spedding – Wizz Jones – Mike Wilson and Damian Barber (Demon Barbers) – Judie Tzuke and more !
The official album launch will be early summer 2019 along with a big, big promo campaign and tour to follow with his newly formed band The Pitmatics! – www.pitmatics.co.uk
I originally recorded and produced the first version of ‘Nothing at the End of the Rainbow’ in 1986 with Elvis Costello – I was working with Elvis and Loudon Wainright III on other material at the time for EMI Records – I remember receiving a cracker review saying that I had produced “A Song to Slit one’s Wrists to” ! that was the headline – nothing’s changed there then! This, my own version also features Peter Knight on fiddle!
Mostly for fun now. Here are our old mates Merry Hell and ‘My Finest Hour’ from their album Anthems To The Wind. A wonderful euphemism.
Anne Marie Almedal is a Norwegian singer and composer whose album, Lightshadow, is now on release. Almedal, was the lead singer of the band Velvet Belly from 1989 – 2003 and has released a number of solo albums since then, a little more folk oriented than those I’ve listened to by the band.
Lightshadow has a classy sound to it, at times almost orchestral, occasionally almost ambient in its accompaniment. Her vocals are precise – sometimes breathy, sometimes with the vocal flourishes of a show singer. To give a mixed analogy to singers better known in in the U.K., the vocals and arrangements remind me of something somewhere between Judy Collins and Kate Bush.
All but one of the songs are written by Almedal and her partner Nicholas Sillitoe. Perhaps the most easily accessible is the single, ‘Sheltering Sky’ which you can hear in the video link below, which is quite lovely – folk-pop perhaps? I also like ‘Hard Times’ with a predominantly soaring vocal against the piano and strings which then finishes quietly, strings stilled, and the lyrics “I wish I was unbreakable/ That every wound would heal/ How strong it would make me/ feel”.
Lightshadow, I suspect, will speak to those who are already fans. I’ve enjoyed listening to the album but found it a little too stylized in places. However, that probably says as much about my preference for music which is a bit more raw than this as it does about Lightshadow, because the album is well played, well produced and beautifully sung.
Memory Lane (released on June 3, 2013) is the latest album to showcase the visionary folk of Norwegian songstress Anne Marie Almedal.
“Memory Lane” is a sweeping collection of songs, timeless in sound, a panorama of nostalgia, with flashes of psych-folk, cinematic classicism all wrapped up in Anne Marie’s powerful voice. Her personal history takes in stints with art-rock groups, features with the likes of Dazed And Confused, long tours and long days – but as she settled in Norway with producer, and British husband, Nicholas, they began to collaborate on a more intimate sound – one influenced by seminal folk records, acoustic instrumentation and the icy, spectral surroundings of their adopted hometown.
From the subtle, sparse production twinned to a beautiful melody of opener “Back To Where It Started” right through to closer “The Wanderers”, the album skits back and forth between the organic sounds of their 60’s and 70’s folk influences through to a telling sign to their location – a confident approach to modern pop warmth twinned with the dark, introspective lyrics that the Scandinavians have been doing so well in recent years, the confidence is unmistakable. The record contains both hooks and heart, a testament to Anne Marie’s songwriting and vocal skills.
Already building further success in her home country of Norway, the support of legendary producer John Wood and folk legend Danny Thompson should help her find a place amongst the folk audience and wider in the UK too.