I’ve been going on a bit of a folk journey over the past week or so, spurred on by a cracking list from The Telegraph that features the best albums in the genre so far in 2015 (you should totally go and check it out – it’s fantastic).
Now, I’m limiting myself to just one album or so per day in order to stretch out the enjoyment as much as possible. And I’m trying not to just post about each of them as they come, as this would mean that the next month on this blog will look pretty same-y. But I’ll make an exception if it’s something phenomenal, and that’s exactly the situation we’re in today.
I’ve literally just finished listening to Tomorrow Will Follow Today, the recent album from Sean Lakeman (the producer extraordinaire brother of folk troubadour Seth) and angelic-voiced singer Kathryn Roberts. And oh my God, what a phenomenal piece of work. I try to keep the hyperbolic superlatives to a minimum, lest every post becomes a “ZOMFG, this is the bestest thing EVAH!!!”, but this is outstanding from start to finish.
In fact, there’s so much good stuff here that it’s been difficult to pick just one song to showcase it. For starters, there’s a myriad styles in play here – flitting between stomping folk anthems, sensual ballads and maudlin odes – that it’s a joy to see what comes next in the track listing. And there are some absolute crackers along the way: 52 Hertz is a lovely song about a lonely whale singing about how the other whales don’t know he exists (seriously, it’s awesome), while La Moneca (Queen of the island of Dolls) is a sumptuous tune that sounds like an amazing fusion of Suzanne Vega, Kate Bush and Jethro Tull.
A Song to Live By and Soft the Morning Sun are both unsettlingly beautiful – easily the most emotional beats on the album and breathtakingly lovely – and there are some great, traditional-sounding offerings in the guise of The Robber Bridegroom and the song I finally settled on to post here: Child Owlet. It’s a dark, broody piece of guitar and vocals based on one of the traditional Child ballads and it’s fantastic. Plus it’s a style that I’ve not really featured on my blog, so that’s why it gets the nod.
But seriously, just go and listen to the whole album from start to finish. It’s outstanding.