The Lilac Time are a long-running group who have left it a leisurely eight years since their last album was released. No Sad Songs broke that streak, and went down very well, and now Prussian Blue rounds it all out with an alternate mix of its title track (from that album) and new versions of a number of old favourites. 12” on Tapete.
12" £9.99 TR326
12" EP on Tapete. Edition of 500 copies.
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You know you can trust a country folk record if a man who used to be in Duran Duran and went on to write for Robbie Williams was involved in its making, and this record sees the now acoustic mainstay Stephen Duffy turn his project into a family affair: after releasing the eight-year icebreaker that is No Sad Songs, he returns with Prussian Blue, featuring two studio tunes and a couple of live oldies. Duffy, wife Claire, their daughter and a brother called Nick are involved in creating it, and as a collective unit they make one of the most Decemberists-y records of the year! The Decemberists released one already, so this in a close second right now -- between the minor tales, adoring soft twang and brushed drums, it’s like curling up in a bed of folklore.
“Prussian Blue” sees the band just as they were in the ‘80s, marrying sweet familial vocal choiring with instruments that are whispering. It’s chilled and restrained, though the band switch keys entirely for “The Road To Happiness”, a live performance of a well worn storytold number from ‘87, in which Duffy sounds almost exactly like Colin Meloy (reverse that sentence for a fairer analysis of the history of folk music). Another live rendition of “The Lost Girl In The Midnight Sun” is triumphant, weaving folk psychedelia together with lush country arrangements It’s like like Love loving Fairport Convention, which isn’t how Duran Duran often sound: you have to cherish the little paths this band go down, because they might never again.
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