With a name as quintessentially Irish as Seamus Fogarty, you can be sure that you’re getting treated to a music steeped in folk tradition. Ducks and Drakes follows his debut album, progressing the alt-folk lineage further into some interesting directions. Fusing field recordings with electronics and his well-informed songwriting style, this EP is a keen step forward. Out on vinyl 12” from Lost Map.
12" EP on Lost Map in screen-printed sleeve.
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- Ducks and Drakes EP by Seamus Fogarty
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Apologies to Seamus for the lateness of this review. Everything seems to have overtaken him in the race to get written about this week. The irony being that whilst half of those things are rubbish, this is rather lovely. I recently spent a few days near Berwick Upon Tweed in August and this record reminds me of those wind swept times. What is it about the sea eh?
Seamus Fogarty's previous album reminded me of the sea and this one does too. The opening title track is about as laid back as you can get without falling into the sea. It's what I hesitate to call folk-tronica. It has a lovely repetitive guitar figure accompanied by beats and weird noises. The vocals are thin but wonderfully evocative and thicken up when harmonies are added. All kinds of bits come in and out of the mix, a clarinet, computer scree, a bit of Syd Barrett slide guitar. 'Computer Graph' is an odd combination of found sound sea shanty and repeato-electronica, 'Holyhead' uses piano rather than guitar. Seamus sounds really sad. He shouldn't be as he's made some lovely music here.
Over on the other side there's a track with a long title which takes up the entirety of one side. Again it combines traditional, folky sounds with pulsating electronic bleeps. There's a certain melancholy present in all these tracks that it's hard to describe in words. It hits you just there. The lyrics are thoughtful and unusual and the music is experimental without getting on your wick. A catch all comparison would be an interesting version of King Creosote or James Yorkston where every note has been poured over for maximum emotional impact. Another winner from Lost Map.
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