Silver Lining “Heart and Mind Alike” (Independent, 2018)

Norwegian Americana? Reviewed in the UK? Why not, Americana is a broad and growing church, and all are welcome. Silver Lining are from Oslo, and have a very gentle approach, producing beautiful music with space and sparsity. With all members contributing songs and voice, harmonies are very much to the front, the acoustic and electric guitars blending nicely. At times the pedal steel sounds so ethereal as to seem divine. Acknowledged influences are Gillian Welch, Union Station & Laura Marling, flavours of which can be heard throughout. Continue reading “Silver Lining “Heart and Mind Alike” (Independent, 2018)”

Josh McGovern “Weight” – Listen

The new single from Brighton singer/songwriter Josh McGovern, ‘Weight’ is a beautifully haunting piece of dark alt-folk/Americana addressing mental health. The song features Josh’s vocals pairing with some rather lovely harmonies alongside lush string and brass sections, the sound being reminiscent of the songwriting work of Nick Cave, Jeff Buckley and Leonard Cohen. Josh says, “Weight is the most black and white thing I’ve ever written. It’s a stark survey of the end of love and my mental health – the bits no one wants to talk about. I’m not the best at talking about that stuff, but so many people struggle with the same situations. I think it’s important to have songs that people can relate to, I wouldn’t be half of who I am without the beautiful music of my peers.”

Ruen Brothers “All My Shades Of Blue” (Ramseur, 2018)

Ruen Brothers aka Henry and Rupert Skansall are Scunthorpe’s very own success story. Having been catapulted from boozy ‘Sunny Scunny’ dives to Rick Rubin’s Malibu Shangri La studios they could be forgiven for being a little bewildered at the fanfare surrounding their Roy Orbison and Everly Brothers -inspired take on rock n roll. Instead, their starched shirts remain as crisp as ever and there’s still not a hair out of place while debut album ‘All My Shades Of Blue’ continues to take the US by storm. Continue reading “Ruen Brothers “All My Shades Of Blue” (Ramseur, 2018)”

I See Hawks In LA, The Green Note, London, 19th July 2018

I See Hawks In LA opened their extensive UK tour with this sold out performance at London’s Green Note, and were in fine form. Playing as a four piece and “acoustic” with Paul Lacques on lead guitar, Victoria Jacobs on snare drum and tiny cymbal, Rob Waller on guitar and lead vocals and Paul Marshall the one exception to the acoustic rule by playing electric bass. They began their first set with a song that really tells you all you need to know about I See Hawks In LA – ‘Raised by Hippies‘. Continue reading “I See Hawks In LA, The Green Note, London, 19th July 2018”

Willie Nelson “does” Frank Sinatra, September – Watch

Not in that way obviously. Have a good weekend dear readers and we leave you with news that Legacy Recordings will be releasing ‘My Way’-Willie Nelson’s new studio album (and 12th for the label)- on Friday, September 14th. The first single to be taken from the album ‘Summer Wind’ is out today – you can watch the video for it below.  Continue reading “Willie Nelson “does” Frank Sinatra, September – Watch”

Catch Ethan Johns & the Black Eyed Dogs before they run away

Ethan Johns continues a brief residency with his band, the Black Eyed Dogs, at the Servant Jazz Quarters in Dalston, East London next week, prior to the release of his new album ‘Anamnesis’ which is due out on the 10th of August. He performs as part of a trio next Tuesday and closes with a full band show on the 30th of July.
Continue reading “Catch Ethan Johns & the Black Eyed Dogs before they run away”

Track Premiere : Uncle Luc “Bones of the Days”

Nostalgia, as we all know, isn’t what it used to be – but Luke Barham (aka Uncle Luc) hasn’t let that hold him back.  ‘Bones of the Days‘ is the latest single to be taken from Uncle Luc’s sophomore album ‘Sticking to the Rules’ and reflects with affection on the simpler days of youth – College, University and beyond, with first jobs that just were a means to pay “for CDs, gear and beer”.   The song features the pedal steel talents of BJ Cole who is perhaps best known for playing on ‘Tiny Dancer’.  It all combines for a dreamy, lush sounding and self deprecating  little gem of a song.

Steve Tilston “Distant Days” (Riverboat Records, 2018)

It’s not uncommon these days for more, ahem, ‘mature’, artists to cherry-pick and rework their own back catalogue in a bare-bones style. There can be any number of reasons for them doing so, including, but certainly not limited to, reclaiming those songs from record company shenanigans. Whatever the precise reasoning behind this particular solo acoustic retrospective, it’s a timely reminder of just how admirable Tilston’s work has been throughout the more than four decades (and even more labels) since his much-praised 1971 debut ‘An Acoustic Confusion‘ emerged on the Village Thing label. Continue reading “Steve Tilston “Distant Days” (Riverboat Records, 2018)”

John Renbourn “Live in Kyoto 1978” (Drag City, 2018)

It hardly needs repeating that John Renbourn was a phenomenally talented guitarist who turned his hand to a variety of music – folk, jazz, blues, the start of the ‘Early Music’ movement.  And he excelled in all of these, his playing studious and careful and at the same time wonderfully fluid and filled with a joie de vie that somehow captured a mischievous glint in the eye translated into a glorious sound.  A stalwart of the club scene as a solo artist and in various duos and, post-Pentangle groups as well. Continue reading “John Renbourn “Live in Kyoto 1978” (Drag City, 2018)”