A Bandcamp Friday Beginner’s Guide to Sahel Sounds

Every Bandcamp Friday the lovely people at Sahel Sounds make the whole back catalogue available at Name Your Price; a great opportunity for new comers to the label, especially in this cost of living crisis when picking up a new album for free if needs be might just be the difference between maintaining mental health and preventing a breakdown.

But with so many albums to choose from and all by artists never heard of before, where to start? Continue reading

Mundo Primitivo’s Paisaje Interior

I can’t remember what took me to Mundo Primitivo’s Paisaje Interior, but Holy shit I’m sure glad who/whatever it was did.

Track 1: ‘Intro’ is an instrumental with a rock ‘n’ roll swagger reminiscent of Duane Eddy’s ‘Peter Gunn’; there’s menace and purpose in the brooding prowl, a cat on the move but always taught and ready to pounce; it turns out to be the calm before the storm.

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A review of Ian Arkley’s second solo album via poetic journeys on the London Underground

ArkleyII_COVERIan Arkley’s second solo album two is compellingly converse. Frequently touching on fiercely hunting, it equally remains subtle throughout. two picks up where one left of with bells on thanks to the addition of a dulcimer, lyre and pitched down acoustic guitar for bass. Mastering and layout are by Michael Shaffer of label Opa Loka Records, on which two is released; beyond that, Ian is responsible for all aspects including photographs and artwork. Continue reading

Down and out to sea

classy live studio 2021 editRich Brown wanted to draw a line under what was intended as a lockdown project, and having had enquiries about them, decided a CD—his first physical release—would do exactly that.

Revisiting old songs with a tweak here and there, plus adding three completely new, Down and out to sea contains ten tracks, all of which were recorded, mixed and mastered in Rich’s own home studio; a place that started as a duvet fort and has become something producing sound that one would be hard pressed to realise hadn’t been recorded in a real studio with all the engineering and mastering that goes with it.

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SÖNUS: Usurper of the Universe

coverWhirring into life like a comet lowrider being fired up, Usurper of the Universe is an ever expanding cloud of trippy space dust gritty with derision. Who, or perhaps what, is SÖNUS is a question the answer to can change with every listen; the six track album as much space rock opera—a beer and bong infused version of Queen’s Flash Gordon score with SÖNUS playing both band and Ming—as a frustration-driven social commentary not only on the world we currently live in but always have.

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Welcome to the Carnival known as DUIR!

A substantial aspect of DROME is the matter of time, so appropriate then that its first listen transports me back to the mid seventies and a trip up North to see relatives which included a visit to the fabled Yorkshire Dales.

Nothing of the actual visit remains in memory beyond it being uneventful. It’s all the things said about the place by family members beforehand that spring to mind. The potential for heavy mists to suddenly descend and leave anyone there disorientated on the vast expanse of open land hard enough to navigate at the best of times.

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Rich Brown: the new shining light of Folk?

Rich Brown’s EPs Pandemo and The Misinformation Age get their first listens with my customary no attention paid to any of the review package notes.

Brown genres as Folk, something that as a rule is only enjoyed by me when live in a pub and drunk enough to think I know the lyrics.

It’s not a style I know much about and what I’m hearing puts me in mind of a low-key Greenday or a smooth Pogues.

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