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- Charcoal Black and the Bonny Grey / Shallow Brown by Rob St. John
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Ah, Lancashire. As an honorary Yorkshireman I am supposed to detest the place. Okay, it’s not Yorkshire (but what is?) yet take a drive down the A59 heading towards the meticulously well presented village of Whalley and on your left will rise up the stupendous bulk of Pendle Hill. Even this staunch supporter of all things West Riding could not fail to be impressed by the Pendle area and environs.
The A side of this lovely little single is a Lancastrian song of the Industrial Revolution. The song is a slow burning, eerie folk number, expertly played and sung and as with many folk songs of the era retains interest throughout with its keening chorus vocals and violin interludes. I’m less familiar with Dartmouth, Devon from where the B side ‘Shallow Brown’ originates. This is a more spectral, sparse number with gorgeous finger picked acoustic guitar accompaniment. This is the type of folk music that I adore, completely and utterly authentic, completely sensitive to the material and well worth a few moments of your time.
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