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A Tale Untold – Louise Le May

A superb debut album - more here.

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Exposition Universelle – Orwell

The latest slice of sophisticated French pop from Orwell - more here.

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Glass Fool – Kaurna Cronin

Debut UK release for Australian singer-songwriter Kaurna Cronin - more here

Odessey and Oracle and The Casiotone Orchestra (f0125)

Odessey & Oracle and The Casiotone Orchestra

An extraordinary debut by French band Odessey & Oracle - more here.

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Arced – Cymbient

New from Welsh psychedelic art-rockers Cymbient - more here.

Louise Le May’ A Tale Untold – Reviews/Press

Here’s some of the latest press and reviews about Louise Le May‘s beautiful album A Tale Untold:

Shindig! review:

“This wonderful debut album is a thoughtful and beautiful collection of enchanting songs from a unique talent. Writte with a keen eye for, and understanding of, those observations and details that transform the mundane into art, Le May is a worthy addition to an English tradition of songwriting that spans Ray Davies and Lennon and McCartney to Kate Bush and Kirsty MacColl.

Louise’s pure, sensual voice embraces the power of the simple and understated and this elegance of means is complemented by the sensitive arrangements of Louis Philippe and the intelligent and non-intrusive work of producer Ken Brake. Highlights include the delightful ‘Cassandra’, a pretty but poignant song shot through with narrative visions of pathos-riven domesticity, and the haunting ‘Broken Child’.

Stylistically diverse yet conceptually coherent, this album ranges across a variety of genres as it seeks to marry up creative intent with a rich variety of influences.” ****
– Greg Healey, Shindig!

FATEA review:

“…this is bravely gentle, soul-assuaging music that needs to be played loud so that its often swooningly luxuriant attention to detail and hidden depths can be properly savoured. A truly enchanting disc.”
– David Kidman, FATEA

DOA review by Keiron Phelan:

“Back in the good old days (yeah, right) if you hadn’t made some kind of musical splash by the grand old age of, say, twenty-five, it was widely accepted that taking your Dad’s well-meant advice and finally knuckling down to your Ministry of Agriculture & Fisheries day-job was probably a wise move. Speaking as one who didn’t get signed by a label until I was thirty-six, I’ve always been grateful that those days have long since passed, the more so when I come across a pleasure as unexpected as Louise Le May’s adept out-of-the-blue debut album A Tale Untold.

Being beyond the first flush, it’s still somewhat fortuitous that this collection of Le May’s songs ever saw the light of day and such luminaries as DJ and former El Records factotum Chris Evans and long-term indie mover and shaker Louis Philippe must be thanked for (in the former case) astutely recognising the quality of and disseminating Louise’s original rough demos and (in the latter) artfully handling the arrangement duties that brought this album to full fruition. The road, it seems, was long.

Yet as nurtured as this release may have been, the end result is no product of mentored guidance. A Tale Untold, from top to tail, is thoroughly Le May’s show. Singer-songwriters (for such she is) as a breed can incline towards either over earnest pleas or stern pronouncements as modes of lyrical delivery and thus render their territory a little tiresome. Arriving at the party fully formed, however, (to really mix my metaphors) allows Louise to adroitly bypass that whole jejune conceit and the narratives in all of her songs prove masterpieces of both economical lyrical persuasion and sheer vocal poise. That Le May is something of a Kate Bush fan becomes evident during the progress of the songs, although vocally she’s as reminiscent of Alison Goldfrapp during her faux-folk period with a hint of Lindsay Moore’s pensive “I Start Counting” and especially a de-cutesified Noosha Fox (I kid you not!), a far more resonant and (how to put this?) adult vocal presence than our Kate. Indeed, Le May does share both Bush’s imaginative sweep and freshness and matches her in the sophistication of her melody lines, yet steers largely clear of the blowsy, over-egged, hippy-dippyness that can undermine even the best of KB’s creations. Here the tone is well-earthed, the mysteries of life are wryly observed and as personal or idiosyncratic as the songs may be, the feeling is always that Louise is in the world with you, sharing it, not in some introspective parallel universe.

Arrangement wise A Tale Untold is a piano-centric affair, wisely allowing Le May’s voice centre stage position, dealing in effective and tastefully restrained embellishments (double-bass, string quartet and even a burst of cajon from Young Marble Giants’ Stuart Moxham) and not distractions. There’s the odd occasion when the shadow of La Bush falls a little too heavily upon proceedings for my taste, “Be My Guru” being an example. Other than that one could highlight pretty much the entire complement of songs present as particularly deserving of attention, the more so as their variety of tone is remarkable in itself. But, as space won’t permit, here’s the top of the cream.

A better melodically balanced song than “Cassandra” is hard to think of outside the realm of mid-’60s McCartney. Its lyrics of suburban limbo and longing find poetry in the ordinary and its double-edged sunniness and sadness are equally reminiscent of the glory days when Macca kept one eye warm and one eye cold. The clock-tick, Jacques Brel ‘world impatience’ influenced piece that is “Photographic” riffs on the hallucinogenic thinness of a repetitive life and contains a wordless vocal hook that simply does not let go. Meanwhile, the chorus of the deliberately sparse “Sink And Swim” is made gloriously enormous by simple dint of Le May’s massed twisting and descending lyrical lines.

Primus inter pares status, however, goes to the sublime and haunting tones of opener “Broken Child”. An almost Henry Jamesesque ghost-story of a song, featuring a beautifully understated scoring of woodwind and reminiscent of Serafina Steer’s criminally underrated “Peach Heart” this paean to the memory of an unhappy past epitomises the union of emotional complexity and expressive simplicity of which Le May is so singularly capable.

All said, A Tale Untold is a genuine ‘keeper’ of an album and a work – I can’t resist saying – that will grow in the telling.”
– Keiron Phelan

An interview with Keiron Phelan in DOA:

http://www.adequacy.net/2016/01/interview-louise-le-may/

R2/Rock’n’Reel Review:

“Haunting and atmospheric…Louise’s ethereal voice sits above a classy, restrained backing…Fine singing and musicianship abound and there are distinctly beautiful segments…”
– Ian Croft

A Motley Miscillany’s Albums of Year 2015:

“A haunting collection of songs which can be (and is now being) lazily compared to Kate Bush. Beautifully composed and arranged, it’s an immersive, dreamlike record that has a rich and varied texture, but ultimately relies on Le May and her stunning voice for its poignant, evocative impact.”
– William Pinfold, A Motley Miscillany

http://williampinfold.com/inevitably-the-releases-of-the-year-2015-part-five/

Flight of the Sky Pilot Discoveries of the Year (2015):

Acts that I’ve only become aware of in the past 12 months, that have really stood out.

“#2 Louise Le May – A beautiful voice singing equally enthralling songs, Louise’s voice reminds me in places of Judy Dyble. This folky delight needs to be heard wider, I think.”
– John Simms

http://flightoftheskypilot.blogspot.co.uk/2015/12/music-of-2015.html

Pop Junkie’s Albums of the Year (2015):

“23 – Louise Le May – A Tale Untold – Pastoral folky pop from a very special songstress. This album, which has been a long time coming, has shades of Kate Bush on the beautiful Cassandra and Judee Sill and Judy Collins on the opener Broken Child, yet is delivered in a lovely, low key very English manner. Other stand outs include Be My Guru – reminiscent of the long lost Brighton band The Mummers – and Sink and Swim which novelist Jonathan Coe loves so much it inspired a chapter in his new-ish book Number 11.”
– Pop Junkie

https://popjunkielondon.wordpress.com/2015/12/30/albums-of-the-year-2015/

L’Attimo Fuggente / Indie for Bunnies Review (IT):

“Louise Le May è una musicista inglese di grandissimo talento. Un talento unico e molto inglese, appunto. La sua musica, accompagnata dai sopraffini arrangiamenti dell’immenso artista francese Louis Philippe, è difficile da classificare, riflessiva e onirica al tempo stesso e la sua voce, naturale e leggera, ha una profondità e una forza espressiva sorprendenti. Louise ha pubblicato un EP in edizione limitata nel 2009 attirando recensioni entusiastiche e airplay da Guy Garvey, Tom Robinson e tanti altri, noi, naturalmente, compresi. Ci è voluto, poi, qualche tempo, grande dedizione e molta, molta ispirazione per arrivare a “A Tale Untold” il suo album d’esordio, che esce in questi giorni. Un lavoro che è valsa la pena aspettare. Un debutto tardivo, ma assolutamente soddisfacente. Arrangiato da Louis Philippe (e chi non lo conoscesse, farebbe meglio a informarsi e ad ascoltare i suoi album) e prodotto da Ken Brake e Louis Philippe stesso, e con un piccolo contributo da parte di Stuart Moxham dei Young Marble Giant, “A Tale Untold” è un album da ascoltare con calma e dedizione, al sicuro, mentre fuori scorrono sempre più frenetiche le immagini del mondo.”
Francesco Amoroso

http://www.indieforbunnies.com/2015/11/20/lattimo-fuggente-16-novembre-2015/

Progressive del Nuovo Millenio’s top 5 international albums 2015:

“Leggerezza ed intensità nella sua vocalità espressiva, Louise Le May è artista di grande talento, capace di far vibrare corde emotive pur nel minimalismo di questo suo folgorante debutto discografico full-length (ha al suo attivo un e.p. del 2009).
A Tale Untold, questo il titolo dell’album della musicista inglese, è un disco da seguire con attenzione per cogliere le rilevanti sfumature in esso contenuto.
Un impressionante debutto!”

http://progressivedelnuovomillennio.blogspot.co.uk/2015/12/top-five-internazionale.html

Pop News (FR) VIP’s top albums of 2015:

“Louise le May – A Tale Untold. Une chanteuse anglaise à découvrir de toute urgence pour les fans de Kate Bush ou Judee Sill. Le French Londoner Louis Philippe est aux arrangements, et c’est très beau.”
– Jérôme Didelot (Orwell)

http://www.popnews.com/popnews/bilan-2015-les-tops-des-vip/2

8.5/10 review in Ondarock (IT):

“…an album that restores music to its cultural centre…”
– Gianfranco Marmoro

http://www.ondarock.it/recensioni/2015_louiselemay_ataleuntold.htm

Rockerilla Magazine (IT) Review and Interview:

Rockerilla Review and Interview by Francesco Amoroso

8/10 review in Distortion (IT):

http://www.distorsioni.net/canali/dischi/a-tale-untold

Resident Music Review:

“Stunningly beautiful debut album of ethereal folk from a unique and very English talent – Le May’s wonderful voice sits perfectly within luscious and sophisticated arrangements…”
– Resident Music

Music Won’t Save You (E) Review:

“Il contegno espressivo di Louise Le May fa infatti balenare immagini di teatri rifiniti da velluti e arredi d’epoca, eppure nelle sue canzoni non c’è davvero nulla di sovrabbondante, nessun orpello che ne alteri il contenuto ma solo rifiniture che ne esaltano la naturale bellezza.

Così, la grazia senza tempo dell’artista inglese rifulge in tutta la sua classe tanto in semplici ballate al pianoforte (“Furniture” e la title track di chiusura), quanto in frammenti dal distante retaggio folk (“Coal-Marble-Stone”) e persino quando si associa a cadenze ritmiche sbarazzine e sorprendenti (“Radium Smile”). L’essenza più pura di “A Tale Untold” risiede tuttavia nell’equilibrata associazione della delicatezza interpretativa della Le May a contesti orchestrali ariosi (“Broken Child”), vivaci (“Cassandra”), sognanti (“Photographic”) e profondamente romantici (“Thunderbird”).

È davvero un altro mondo quello delle canzoni di Louise Le May, un mondo tratteggiato da poche pennellate morbide ma decise, da contemplare come una tela d’autore la cui armoniosa bellezza prescinde dalla collocazione fisica o temporale ma che in “A Tale Untold” è, dopo lunga attesa, finalmente ora e qui.”
– Raffaello Russo

http://musicwontsaveyou.com/2015/11/23/louise-le-may-a-tale-untold/

The Garden of Earthly Delights Albums of the Year:

http://www.gardenofearthlydelights.com/Charts2015.html

Finally, some of you may not be aware but one track from the album Sink and Swim, was the inspiration for one of the stories in Jonathan Coe‘s latest book, No. 11:

JC_ackn

 

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VIDEO: In the Barley – Rivers of England

Here’s a great new video from Rivers of England featuring In the Barley from their new album Astrophysics Saved My Life – out on Folkwit on 26 February 2016:

For more information, go here.

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VIDEO: Melody Cycle #1 – Jack and the’

Jack and the’ have just released this video of the track Melody Cycle #1 taken from the new album Melody Cycle due out on Folkwit on 22 February 2016:

Melody Cycle ♯1 (video) from Jack and the on Vimeo.

For more information go here.

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NEW RELEASE: A Tale Untold – Louise Le May

Louise Le May’s debut album A Tale Untold is a stunningly beautiful album:

Louise Le May is something different – a unique and very English talent. Sometimes hard to categorise, her music in combination with the luscious, sophisticated arrangements of Louis Philippe, soars. It’s timeless, dreamlike and reflective.

Her voice, recorded with minimal fuss, open and natural is the first thing you notice. It has a lightness yet conveys a surprising depth. In the words of The High Llamas frontman Sean O’Hagan:

“She has the steady delivery of Judee Sill, but the harmonic flavour of Kate Bush or Robert Wyatt.”

Louise released a limited edition EP in 2009 attracting glowing reviews and airplay from Guy Garvey, Tom Robinson (including a live session) and many others. The EP featured reworkings of Louise’s early demos by Louis Philippe who discovered an immediate affinity with her music having been introduced to it by The Curveball presenter Christopher Evans. Plans were made for this album – A Tale Untold.

Some time, dedication and great deal of inspired effort has resulted in an album that’s been well worth the wait. An impressive full debut.

Arranged by Louis Philippe and produced by Ken Brake and Louis Philippe, A Tale Untold was recorded at Regal Lane Studio, London, recorded, mixed and mastered by Ken Brake. Piano arrangements on Furniture and The Only Fish by Danny Manners. The album features a plethora of fine musicians and even a small contribution from Young Marble Giant Stuart Moxham.

Reviews:

“…this is bravely gentle, soul-assuaging music that needs to be played loud so that its often swooningly luxuriant attention to detail and hidden depths can be properly savoured. A truly enchanting disc.”
– David Kidman, FATEA

“This wonderful debut album is a thoughtful and beautiful collection of enchanting songs from a unique talent. Writte with a keen eye for, and understanding of, those observations and details that transform the mundane into art, Le May is a worthy addition to an English tradition of songwriting that spans Ray Davies and Lennon and McCartney to Kate Bush and Kirsty MacColl.

Louise’s pure, sensual voice embraces the power of the simple and understated and this elegance of means is complemented by the sensitive arrangements of Louis Philippe and the intelligent and non-intrusive work of producer Ken Brake. Highlights include the delightful ‘Cassandra’, a pretty but poignant song shot through with narrative visions of pathos-riven domesticity, and the haunting ‘Broken Child’.

Stylistically diverse yet conceptually coherent, this album ranges across a variety of genres as it seeks to marry up creative intent with a rich variety of influences.” ****
– Greg Healey, Shindig!

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NEW RELEASE: Exposition Universelle – Orwell

Announcing the release of the latest album by Orwell – Exposition Universelle – Release date: 9 October 2015

Airy, orchestral-pop brilliance from Jérôme Didelot and friends, propelled by guitars, piano, strings, brass, vocal harmonies, vibraphone and vintage electronics (Optigan, Mellotron, etc.). Richly arranged, but ever ready with the odd synth, tuba, backmasking or unexpected chord to pierce the mix, Orwell’s fifth album is a return to French after the English experience of 2011’s Continental. Vous ne parlez pas français? No worries! Sunshine pop and baroque rock are the lingua franca here.

Exposition Universelle was conceived on the tenth anniversary of Orwell’s debut album Des Lendemains. Listening back to the old material, Didelot felt many leads had been left unexplored:

“So I wrote ‘Exposition Universelle’ as if it was a kind of follow-up. The themes—the light and dark sides of mankind, the way the future is linked to progress, the gap between collective and intimate issues—are rather similar, as well as the instrumentation (quite orchestral) but the writing is more mature, I guess.”

Didelot’s collaborators this time around include Thierry Bellia (Variety Lab), Alexandre Longo (Cascadeur), Vincent Mougel (Kidsaredead), Julien Lonchamp (Jack and The’).

Buy as DOWNLOAD, CD or Vinyl via the Bandcamp widget above. The album is distributed in the UK by Proper Music Distribution and is available through all of the usual high street and online outlets.

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COMING SOON: Exposition Universelle – Orwell

Just under 2 weeks until the UK release of French band Orwell‘s latest album – Exposition Universelle – a wonderful slice of orchestral pop, served up for your listening pleasure.

Check out this video (produced by our friends at Hot Puma Records (Belgium)) featuring Je Ne Sais Pas Mourir taken from the album:

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ODESSEY & ORACLE – Shindig! Review

Shindig! magazine is back! The relaunch edition, Issue 48 features a 5-star review of Odessey & Oracle‘s ‘Odessey & Oracle and the Casiotone Orchestra‘:

“The continental contingency (Georgio Tuma, Balduin, Jacco Gardner, Sudden Death of Stars, The Limifianas, Orval Carlos Sibellius) have always been more experimental, weirder and interesting than their UK and US counterparts. French trio (two girls and a boy) Odessey & Oracle certainly win the prize for being the most magical, strange and beautiful.

Circling around avant-garde classical elements (akin to Smile and Van Dyke Parks), folk (there’s a lot of the girly elements of The Incredible String Band, and the forlorn ‘The Cat With Lipstick’ could very well be Vashti Bunyan fronting The Beach Boys) and the layered synths and sound art of electronica originators Mort Garson and Bruce Haak, Odessey & Oracle have a beguiling sound that really can only be described as supernatural. Innocence and the unknown, childishness and the surreal lie at the centre of this, on one hand organic and on the other futuristic, suite of twisted brilliance.” *****
– Jon ‘Mojo’ Mills, Shindig!

Shindig! is a highly influential, truly independent magazine with passion and style – for more, click on the image below:

Layout 1

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NEW RELEASE: GLASS FOOL – Kaurna Cronin

Released in partnership with German label Songs & Whispers, Glass Fool is the debut album of the highly talented young Australian singer songwriter Kaurna Cronin.

With grand story-telling, folk jams and a lyrical sincerity beyond his years, Cronin’s unique folk blend and moving performances have been capturing audiences throughout Europe and Australia, establishing this young singer-songwriter as an emerging international sensation.

“Kaurna Cronin could very quickly spark a new genre and sound across the face of music”
– Fortitude Magazine, UK

“Reminiscent of fellow Adelaideans The Audreys”
– RIU Magazine

Having notched up countless shows throughout 2014/15, with highlights including Australia’s National Folk Festival, Festival Of The Sun, Gorgeous Festival, Nannup Music Festival, Clipsal 500, Fleurieu Folk Festival, Blenhiem Music Festival and Germany’s Breminale along with 50+ shows throughout Europe in 2014, the next 12 months will see Cronin come into his own.

With the anticipated release of Cronin’s debut album Glass Fool, 2015 will see Cronin further strengthen his touring throughout Australia with his Single Launch Tour + Album Release Tour and throughout Europe with another 50+ shows booked in U.K, Germany, Belgium, France and Scandinavia for mid-2015, cementing this young talents position at the height of Australian folk music.

Recently awarded the Folk Alliance Australia Youth Award at The National Folk Festival, prestigious APRA-AMCOS Emily Burrows Award and Best Acoustic Act at the Fowlers Live Music Awards.This wandering storyteller is on the cusp of a new breed of Australian DIY folk artists, reimagining and redeveloping the way music is shared, written and enjoyed across the globe.

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NEW RELEASE: Odessey & Oracle and The Casiotone Orchestra – Odessey & Oracle

French band Odessey & Oracle‘s debut album is a wonderfully inventive example of baroque pop…

Release date: 1 June 2015

Buy the CD and/or the digital album via the Bandcamp widget (above) or direct from our Bandcamp site:

“…a mad, maverick and kaleidoscopically wilful disc, one that’s perhaps not all that easy to fully assess on even a half-dozen plays, but it nevertheless reaps considerable rewards for me. Geddit!”
– David Kidman, FATEA

“…very enjoyable.”
– Dai Jeffries, Folking.com

“Having just reviewed this for issue #48 of Shindig! and completely fallen in love with this French trio’s charms we’re very happy to introduce this wonderful music to a wider audience…(a) pastoral, eccentric and truly brilliant act…”
– Shindig-mag.com

“Baroque Pop is not one of my favourite names for a genre of music, but it’s as good a description as any for this masterpiece by French band Odessey & Oracle. Simultaneously futuristic and nostalgic, this is a beautiful and very Gallic album whose music seems equally rooted in 60s psych pop, space rock, (slightly twee) C86-style indie, Stereolab (go-to reference for modern French alternative music) and baroque/classical music.”
– Pun-Based Name

“One of the most original sound creations of French music in recent years.”
– Gianfranco Marmoro, Ondarock (IT)

“”Wide-eyed, accomplished, orchestrated and in love with an era that deserves the attention, Odessey & Oracle and the Casiotone Orchestras are not only a fun addition to the baroque-pop canon, but a great reminder of what made that scene so special.”
– Edward Charlton, Clicky Clicky Music Blog (US)

Taking their name from The Zombies 1968 cult album, Odessey & Oracle embrace the spirit of 60s psychedelia and experimentalism through a particularly ornate musical styling often referred to as baroque pop.

By no means an attempt to replicate 60s psychedelia, their music is instead influenced by the optimism and expressive freedom of that era. Their music draws its influences from a broad spectrum: from early classical music (medieval, baroque, renaissance) through to contemporary electronic music and is expressed through expansive and sophisticated arrangements featuring instruments ancient (viola da gamba, baroque cello, flute) and modern (electric pianos, Dobro, banjo, analogue synthesizers).

In the process of recording their first album, Odessey & Oracle drew on the support of a dozen musician friends who recorded vocals and instrumental parts giving birth to a speculative band called The Casiotone Orchestra (hence the album title).

Comparisons have been made with the music of The Left Banke, Brian Wilson, Robert Wyatt and the High Llamas.

Odessey & Oracle are:

Fanny L’HÉRITIER : lead vocals, baroque cello and electromechanical piano
Alice BAUDOIN : electric harpsichord, analog synths, recorders and vocals
Guillaume MÉDIONI : guitar, dobro resonator guitar, banjo, viola da gamba and vocals

WEB

http://odessey-and-oracle.blogspot.fr/

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COMING SOON: Odessey & Oracle and The Casiotone Orchestra

We are pleased to announce that we will be releasing this wonderful album on 1 June:

“One of the most original sound creations of French music in recent years.”
– Gianfranco Marmoro, Ondarock (IT)

“”Wide-eyed, accomplished, orchestrated and in love with an era that deserves the attention, Odessey & Oracle and the Casiotone Orchestras are not only a fun addition to the baroque-pop canon, but a great reminder of what made that scene so special.”
– Edward Charlton, Clicky Clicky Music Blog (US)

Find out more here:

http://folkwit.com/artists/odessey-and-oracle
http://odessey-and-oracle.blogspot.fr/

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