Thursday, 2 July 2015

Trembling Bells - The Sovereign Self, album review


This is psychedelic folk, reminding – like so much that I like – of a past, though this isn’t Fairport or Pentangle, and with opening track ‘Tween the Womb and the Tomb, is much more akin to Principal Edward’s Magic Theatre, though it segues into its contemporary sound of Florence and the Machine. Second, O, Where is Saint George? is a clever combination of the English with Eastern chant via elements of Quintessence and Incredible String Band. The eclecticism is dynamic. Third Killing Time in London has even more echoes, but it is generically acid folk with singer Lavinia Blackwell reminding most of the many but I can’t recall precisely enough to namecheck [Shocking Blue’s Mariska Veres, I think]. The guitar work and other is Pink Floyd and thus the influences keep merging and running, a rich amalgam of past and present and the band’s collective excellence. By fifth Bells of Burford we are back to Principle Edward’s, though making it as separate as this is not the point, and when the guitar work on this track goes stratospheric we are in a different far-out dimension. Robin Williamson meets The Band throws its curve ball on sixth The Singing Blood, and the delight in this vibrant heterogeneity is quite nice!

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