In Gowan Ring - The Glinting Spade

In Gowan Ring
The Glinting Spade

Released 1999 on Bluesanct
Reviewed by Lawrence, 25/10/2009ce

This is going to be a difficult album to review. This band has been lumped in with the whole "neo-folk" pigeonhole unfortunately, though about the only thing in common with that rather hackneyed genre is probably the occasional marching drums and trumpets. But this is far from the kind of record that someone like Troy Southgate would pretentiously orate over.

Basically this is folk done in a more British/early music tradition and is far too accomplished to be just the usual uniform-clad idiots who put together three chords, a kettle-drum and dodgy lyrics and think that they're being 'folksy"... The shimmering production suits the material well, and pretty much everything flows in an organic fashion. Of course whatever it's about I'm not sure -- the lyrics are pretty arcane, and I can't figure out if most of it is archaic English psychobabble or if it's an attempt to be psychedelic. Well whatever it is I'm pretty much sold by it... Enigmatic and maybe even a bit creepy.

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