Their profile raised considerably via their work, both live and on disc with Seth Lakeman (who co-credited them on his recent album), the Anglo/American harmony trio of guitarist Emillie Key, her sister Beth on bouzouki and keys and cousin Meghann Loney on drums, make their solo album debut under the guiding hand of Jamie Evans who had produced their self-released single 'Warrior Daughter'.
A rework of that is included here, its clattering drums, handclaps percussion and aggressive electric guitar towering over the traditional folk roots on which it's based. Indeed, this reps a significant experimental move away from their formative sound, announced in the skittering percussion and widescreen soundscapes of 'The Author' and reinforced on the Lumineers meet Fleetwood Mac influences of the rock-driven 'Run' and the electronica foundations of the ethereal pulsing Dove.
There are vestiges of their earlier style on the breathily sung, gathering tribal rhythm of 'Hold On', the simple acoustic shimmers of 'The Valley', a hymnal 'Circumstance' and the traditional-informed 'Taking A Hold', at least until it embraces blues rock and progressive shapes (is that a hint of 'Spirit In The Sky' guitar perhaps?), but mostly this is about them exploring the freedom the studio and making a debut statement gave them.
As such, you'll hear ghostly, ominous keys prowling through 'Steady My Heart' which conjures thoughts of Eurythmics, the synth waterfalls spilling through the shifting tempo 'On And On', and the chameleon five-minute summery title track which, redolent of CS&N, opens with Gaelic folk shades before its acoustic bed takes on a percussive scuff before departing in a cloud of echoey electronic drone. Whatever your expectations were for this, they're likely to be both confounded and surpassed and their upcoming headline Autumn tour promises to be rather special.
|Archie Fisher: Archie Fisher||Various Artists: Spiritual Music From The Hebrides|
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