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Phil Langran Phil Langran
Album: Skywriting
Label: Longshore Drift
Tracks: 13
Website: http://www.phillangranband.com

SKYWRITING is the new intimate and poetic album from Phil Langran. Produced by Boo Hewerdine and Chris Pepper, who between them are building a school of carefully crafted releases, it's a delightful stripped back duo record. Phil and Boo accompany Phil's delicate, beautifully observed pieces, with guitars and splashes of Vibraphone and Harmonium. The whole is a detailed, well recorded rewarding listen. Phil has a real voice with character and life, against his beautifully picked guitar his singing puts me mind of Wizz Jones. Highly personal songs like 'Bright Autumn Sky' and 'Leave To Live' mix carefully observed local detail and real life. The delicate playing on 'World Enough' is just a delight.

Boo offers vocal harmonies that add further sweetness to Phil's charming songs. 'The Diamond Wheel' offers a little bit of bite and sting in the lyric and Phil's weary delivery. 'Snow Angels' has an air of smooth jazz sophistication on an upbeat acoustic pop song. Always well delivered Langran's words have a lyrical grace and power with songs like 'A Rainbow Shawl' and 'Snow on the Mountain' operating as pieces of poetry carried by an acoustic guitar. Older songs like the tender 'Injury Time' audience favorites for The Phil Langran Band here get a more intimate treatment. There is much here to recommend.

Marc Higgins

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