junkboy Three (CD, £10.25)label: enraptured
Popular folk legend has it that three is the magic number. It's very apt then that Junkboy's third offering is named after the number with magic properties because this is the kind of wonderful album they've been promising to make for a while now. Brothers Mik and Rich Hanscomb are at the core of the operation. They, their home studio and a cast of friends embellish their soulful sonic sorcery with all manor of exotic instrumentation. After the ultra slo-fi of 2005's Lost Parade album, the brothers Hanscomb spent time on other projects: writing and playing with proto-emo-folk rockers Shinri, moving from Southend on Sea to Brighton. All the while the brothers partied hard and spent time piecing together music for Three. Three is the culmination of the boysí main interests in music: the lushness of Brian Wilsonís productions, a DIY home recorded ethos, the fragile, soulful expressiveness of songwriters such as Elliott Smith, the laid back, head nodding grooves of Tortoise, the Pagan perversity of Paul Giovanni's Wicker Man soundtrack and the retro-futurist ideology of Krautrock. The reckless, euphoric, bohemian abandon of British folk legend Bert Jansch also runs through the brothers Hanscomb's music. "It's trendy to name drop Bert right now", says Rich, "but we have nothing to do with the nu-folk scene. We just take on our influences and make them our own. There's this gorgeous variation of the E chord that Bert plays on the first track from his Rosemary Lane album, ĎTell Me What Is True Loveí....we have used that chord as a foundation to so many of our soundscapes. We still have no idea what we're doing in the studio though. I guess that's an endearing aspect of Junkboy: our wonkiness and cackhandedness arenít contrived. We record and perform punk rock - poorly but with passion! To Mik and I, music is aural alchemy. Itís all about experimenting with sounds and feels." The result? A highly eclectic, lo-fidelity mash up of influences and styles. Pastoral-prog-rock-soft-focus-electronic-kosmische-folk-core. Or something.
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