Loch Lomond are an ensemble I’ve featured before, they hail from Portland, Oregon and are makers of a unique breed of chamber folk. Their latest LP, the illustrious Dresses, is one I whole heartedly encourage you to cherish.
You Need To Know…
A dark and slick progression from Little Me Will Start a Storm the new album is an extension of their touring White Dresses EP, recorded for the band’s UK label Chemikal Underground and the band recently toured Europe. It’s rare and beautiful, haunting and mellifluous, the type of music which will spin inside your head, in only a good way. The enigmatic Ritchie Gray fronts most of tracks with an evocative vocal, often bound with choral backing, lilting harmonies and well strung together melodies.
Gems from the original EP include ‘Kicking with Your Feet’ and fondly written closer ‘Black Dresses’, wonderful songs which don’t tire themselves out. On the new side of things the choral ‘The Wedding’ builds in substantial vocal curves and orchestral strings, there’s wanderlust in ‘Virgin Mountain’, which spins in capturing melodies and ‘Spray Painted Drums’ brings an offbeat optimism.
Two echoing instrumentals ‘1000 Drums’ and ‘1000 Lakes’ punctuate the record with a considered, peaceful reflection.
You aren’t on the verge of tears but ready for some deep thinking, considering the world and listening to beautiful, unusual music.
I waaaaay late in posting this, but as the album itself took eight years to complete I figure you can forgive my current blogging pace (akin to that of a tortoise’s steps). I first heard Rick Redbeard‘s album No Selfish Heart in December, it already reminds me of Scottish winters and the kind of lamentable snowfall that covered Edinburgh in waves.
Released with the monochrome artwork above last month I believe it’s had much acclaim already and it’s also on one of my favourite Scottish labels, Chemikal Underground.
You Need To Know
It’s the first solo LP from Phantom Band frontman Rick Anthony, a rich collection of mostly love songs, full of emotion, wise words and discovery. Sounding like a refresh of old celtic ballads it’s often thankfully simple his deep, distinctive vocal and moving lyrics are commendable.
Kelvingrove – originally a folk song which Rick learnt along the way, his version is a love song like nothing I’ve ever heard, plush violin meets distinctive Scottish songcraft
Now We’re Dancing – originally released on a spilt single with Adam Stafford it’s a clickety, wry beauty
Wildlove – Like a lullaby, it will raise a smile
No Selfish Heart – This could be my most favoured track on the album, it feels fresh and poignant plus I love the tune.
You’re in need of something pretty, at the coast on a chilly day or sitting my the fire in a log cabin (as we all do of an evening).