Spiro: Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow (Real World/Southbound)

 |   |  1 min read

Spiro: Orrery
Spiro: Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow (Real World/Southbound)

Given the similarity of the styles – repetition, if nothing else – it should come as little surprise that some instrumental folk music can be alarmingly close to the minimalism of Philip Glass, Steve Reich et al.

This British quartet – violin/viola, mandolin, piano and guitar/cello – undertake a number of traditional English tunes but in their intensity and reworkings of what sound like reels and jigs to outside ears can occupy the same terrain as contemporary classical players influenced by the likes of Terry Riley, the Penguin Cafe Orchestra (on the delicate Orrery and sprightly The Vapourer) and others along the same line.

You would assume (and perhaps hope) that when they play this year's Taranaki Womad (details below) they would place heavy emphasis on the upbeat danceable end of their spectrum because this album – as with their earlier Kaleidophonica of 2012, about which we said, “sometimes as annoying as any folk-minimalism, at other times soaring and transcendent” – is demanding, if sometimes gripping home listening.

At an outdoor concert they must surely stoop a little, or a lot, to conquer.

After all, the played pubs so . . .

On record here they are perhaps more for open-minded classical minimalists than Anglo-folk fans and hands-in-the-air Womad dancers.

resized__600x254_e431b816_ee33_4c35_a990_b9bfde5fadcd

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Tift Merritt: See You on The Moon (Concord)

Tift Merritt: See You on The Moon (Concord)

To be honest, despite very much liking most of Merritt's '02 album Bramble Rose -- and concluding the review, "a name to remember, Tift" -- I lost touch with her augmented alt.country... > Read more

Unknown Mortal Orchestra: Multi-Love (Jagjaguwar)

Unknown Mortal Orchestra: Multi-Love (Jagjaguwar)

Ruban Nielson's gift for a melodic twist coupled with lyrics which say something hasn't deserted him. If anything it has deepened and become more soulful and nuanced on this collection which... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

RONNIE SPECTOR INTERVIEWED: Time has come today (2006)

RONNIE SPECTOR INTERVIEWED: Time has come today (2006)

Steven Van Zandt of Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band said it best: " 'Everybody love Ronnie.' It's the first bylaw of rock'n'roll." Ronnie Spector, lead singer of the archetypal 60s... > Read more

THE BARGAIN BUY: Elvis Presley; Original Classic Albums

THE BARGAIN BUY: Elvis Presley; Original Classic Albums

There is never any shortage of Elvis Presley reissues but for true fans those exceptional box sets on The Complete 50's Masters and Complete 60's Master are cornerstone releases and a trove of... > Read more