What sounds like a piano from a western saloon bookends the almost fifty minutes, of the latest album from The Lone Bellow. The short intro leads into ‘I can feel you dancing’, a diamond of a track, warm storytelling Americana with brass!

As each passing year goes by and we get a little older and wiser (possibly), the old cliche is that time genuinely seems to be speeding up, especially as we are now reminded that Ash have been an active band for 25 years.....good grief.
 

If like me, your knowledge of Norway has mainly been acquired from dark and gritty Nordic Noir television then you'll be delighted to know that Louien proves that there's also delicate and beautiful music to be found there amongst the multi episode dramas about serial killers.

Matt Patershuk is a singer/songwriter from La Glace, Alberta, Canada. For a non-driving city dweller like myself that is immediately intriguing. Thanks to Google Earth I was able to explore the roads leading out of this hamlet of 181 inhabitants and all there is is emptiness. Fascinating!

On the front cover of 'Titanic Rising' multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Natalie Mering (recording under the name Weyes Blood) is seen floating in a submerged childhood bedroom which she has described as symbolic of something internal, warm and womb-like. Initially it's the warm, comforting, internal melodies which python their way around your senses, but those melodies are always underpinned by classic songwriting which really sets this album apart, and you really should listen to it as an album to appreciate the recurring lyrical and melodic themes.

Whilst 'The Canoe' is Carrie Tree’s third album of delicate, acoustic songs, she was a new name to me before the album arrived. She’s based out of Brighton, but has an acknowledged wanderlust, from which she draws inspiration and ideas on which to base her music.

Magnetic Skies formed in early 2018 when singer-songwriter Simon Kent and vocalist/programmer Jo Womar were commissioned to collaborate for a one-off arts/charity live show. Now comes their debut EP which, is a dreamy experience and the first of three EPs that the band will release in 2019.

I have to admit that this is the first David Gray album that I have really listened to for many a year. ‘White Ladder’ took the world by storm beck in the late Nineties to the point where we just started to suffer from ‘White ladder’ burn out. There have been a host of albums since but, ‘Gold in a Brass Age’ is David’s first album in four years and that break seems to have been beneficial, as the new album is strong lyrically and has a warm melodic feel to keep away that late winter chill.

Released on Wear Your Band T-shirt To Work Day, I happened to be rummaging through my T-shirts and came across the “Pleased To Meet You...... Ed Harcourt” shirt from 12 years ago.

Ed’s career over the last 15 years has most definitely not been linear. Beyond his seven album releases and various EP’s he’s busied himself the last 5 years with film scores, collaborations with Sophie Ellis-Bextor and Marianne Faithfull, not to mention being the soundtrack to Burberry’s 2014 Christmas.

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