Next month on March 9th sees the return of The Woodbine & Ivy Band who made their self-titled album debut back in 2011.
Once again the line-up features some of Manchester’s finest musicians although this time around they really do take things to the next level. There is a definite richer dynamic at play – Jenny McCormick and James Raynard provide vocals over the guest-vocalist-per-song of the previous release. It provides a deep contrast and a level of continuity whilst musically there is a greater freedom and intuition at play. There are no standards here and whilst inspired by folk – nod especially to Albion Band’s ‘Rise Up Like the Sun’ and Lal & Mike Waterson’s ‘Bright Phoebus’, it exercises a freedom crossing psych, prog, jazz and country rock. What’s on offer is both bold and beautiful, much like the album artwork of Anna Wilson-Hall. Inspiration for this wonderful new dynamic has been partly laid at the door the mid-20th century spiritual teacher G.I. Gurdjieff and his theory of ‘Waking Sleep’ which no doubt determined the album title Sleep On Sleeping On. Whatever the theory this will be an album of the year.
I’m not going to delve to deeply here as all good things come to those who wait and we have more on this incredible release coming soon. But here’s an appetiser with the premiere of ‘Arm a Nation‘ (also our Song of the Day:
A sad song decrying the complexities, hypocrisies and ultimately counteractive tactics of the international arms trade. “Don’t ask Gurney, don’t ask Guthrie… You sure this has to be the way you arm a nation?”
Inspired by the great JJ Cale and Manassas via rainy day Manchester, with a weeping pedal steel, Hammond vamp and jam-band outro.
The line-up includes: Jenny McCormick, James Raynard, Luke Das-Gupta, Mike Doward, John Ellis, Gus Fairbairn, Rachael Gladwin, Chris Hillman, Peter Philipson, Tom Rydeard, Raz Ullah, David A. Jaycock, Ian Budgie Jones, Sam Lench and Anna Zweck.
Sleep On Sleeping On is released via Static Caravan on March 9th 2015
Pre-Order it here: www.staticcaravan.org