Genre/Influences: Dark-Folk, Neo-folk, Cinematographic, Medieval, Ethereal.
Format: Digital, Double CD.
Background/Info: Eight years after the previous chapter in the “Dark Britannica”-series, Cold Spring Records strikes back with the next album featuring thirty two bands –and songs, devoted to Dark-Folk.
Artists: Winterfylleth, Sol-De-Murte, Finglebone, Tim Lane, Soldat, The Familiars, The Sound Of Antler, Beau, Perkelt, A Tiding Of Magpies, C J Mann & Becky Sharp, Thornland, Larynx And Claw, My Silent Wake, Peleser, Robert Pitcher, Peter Ulrich, Sedaylenore, Wolcensmen, Brocc, Venereum Arvum, Sixpenny Wayke, Alex Monk, The Psychogeographical Commission, Silver Of World Union, Sand Snowman Feat. Moonswift, Tim Lane & Hayley Evenett, Sunshine Coding, Coma Wall, Job Eth Young, Nathaniel Mann, Ignis Astrifer.
Content: The common element and main influence running through this compilation for sure is ‘Folk’. It’s a Dark-Folk format mixed and alternated with other influences such as Ethereal (beautiful voices), Medieval spheres reminding music of troubadours and simply Ballads.
The first disc is more diversified, but still more into Medieval music and Ethereal ballads driven by angelic voices. The Folk style is created by the magic of acoustic guitar, accordion, flutes and other acoustic instruments. The vocals are mostly little stories diving the listener into a world of magic.
The second disc takes off with an exclusive song composed for this compilation by Peter Ulrich. This disc is less diversified, but still devoted to the Folk sphere and here again accentuated by authentic instruments.
+ + + : This is much more than simply a conceptual album. Most of the artists are simply devoted to this music style, which in a way belongs to the British culture; it’s an ode to the history of this great country, several songs have been inspired by old poems and old songs. It also is an opportunity to discover an impressive number of less familiar –and totally unknown artists dealing with the same love for this kind of music. Peter Ulrich is for sure the most famous name of the list, but he got some good company. I’m referring to the beautiful debut song by Winterfylleth, the Ethereal Ballad accomplished by Perkelt, the somewhat mystic song by C J Mann & Becky Sharp, the instrumental Medieval performance by My Silent Wake and the beautiful final track by Ignis Astrifer. The CD format also features an illustrated booklet, which gives you some more info about the artists and the songs.
– – – : This compilation series is totally different from what we’re used to hearing on Cold Spring Records so don’t expect the classical Industrial/Noise/Experimental work. Speaking for myself I definitely prefer the first disc featuring the best songs.
Conclusion: This is an interesting work, which sounds as a sonic voyage visiting less familiar music horizons.
Best bands: Ignis Astrifer, Perkelt, Winterfylleth, My Silent Wake, C J Mann & Becky Sharp, Brocc, The Sound Of Antler.