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Padang Food Tigers & Sigbjørn Apeland - Bumblin Creed [Northern Spy - 2016]

British folk duo Padang Food Tigers and Hamonium player Sigbjørn Apeland have recorded for labels such as ECM and Hubro in the past. Between them they plough the various furrows of traditional composition – from Church to country to folk. On this collaborative release on Northern Spy the two parties come together to venture beyond what both normally create into an alternate world of atmospheres.

This album begins with “Saroyan's Appeal”, a gorgeous intro with droning harmonium, interspersed with found sounds and occasional guitar picks. It sets a scene of first glimpses of sunlight flooding across the countryside that you will have readily immersed yourself in before the next, title track, begins.

“Bumblin Creed” is the countryside awakening, the strings pick up after the birds song begins before the harmonium drifts. This is slow lugubrious music that doesn’t go up a notch in pace, it just moves along waiting for you to join it. With “Barley A Breath In Your Parenthesis” and “It's In Thee, Frittering Away” the mood remains contemplative and still. This is like wind moving the crops in a field, a gentle swaying to and fro. “Flåmsbana” and “Twin Hither” end this day perfectly as the sun drifts down behind the hills and the sounds of the countryside disappear into the night.

Each track on this 9 track, 28 minute album is a beautifully crafted piece of exploratory music combining harmonium, folk music and found sound. This is acoustic instruments, this is the ache of a soul in musical form, this is a beautiful landscape shown in notes. This is pastoral music that leaves itself open for you to hear the atmospheres within.No track is too long. No one instrument takes the fore, yet each track leaves you aching and wanting so much more. Simple, yet deeply affecting, playful and intense.

These guys have issued a release that is quite simply a masterpiece! I’m going to put my head on the block and say this is my album of 2016, right here. Anyone who even professes to like any form of intelligent music should hear this album. It is simple, it is clever, it is superb!

Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5

Adam Skyes
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