I think this is probably one of the most highly anticipated videos we’ve premiered on Folk Radio UK. Rather like the planets aligning Seed Stitch, the new single from BBC Folk Award-winner Emily Portman, is released today and we have the great privilege of premiering the video by a fellow Liverpool-based animator Laura Sparks. To coincide with this, Emily will be joined by special guests to play a BBC live session for Mark Radcliffe’s Folk Show tonight (so make sure you tune in: 7-8pm), and she also kicks off her tour this week starting at the Foundling Museum, London on 6th Nov.
The new single Seed Stitch showcases two stand-out songs from her latest album Coracle (read our review here) that subtly spin together folk motifs with personal reflections on motherhood and bereavement. Emily describes the title track as ‘a knitting pattern for DNA’; her beguiling voice rings out over a soundscape of metronomic fiddles, with pulsing wurlitzer, electric guitar, glitch-laden electronics and percussion. Haunting, yet silver-lined Seed Stitch shows Emily’s finely crafted songwriting at its most poignant. The single also features ‘Nightjar’, a beautifully atmospheric song featuring harp, brooding strings and drums, that lyrically captures the last moments of a loved one’s life. Joining the acclaimed Emily Portman Trio on Seed Stitch are guests Sam Sweeney on strings (Bellowhead), M G Boulter on guitars (Lucky Strikes) and Classical percussionist Toby Kearney (BBC Young Musician of the Year 2006). Emily will be touring live with this expanded line up as Emily Portman and the Coracle Band in 2016.
We were not the only one’s finding magic within Coracle for it was recently named a ‘Best Album of 2015’ by the Telegraph and she also appeared on the cover of fROOTS magazine. Coracle has also received plentiful airplay, with accolades from the likes of BBC R3’s Late Junction and Jarvis Cocker on 6 Music. Make every opportunity to see her live, you won’t be sorry, but you may be if you don’t:
November Tour Dates
• 6th Foundling Museum LONDON
• 7th Sugar & Spice BOURNEMOUTH
• 8th Kitchen Garden Cafe BIRMINGHAM
• 9th The Greystones SHEFFIELD
• 10th Forest Arts Centre NEW MILTON
• 11th Howard Assembly Rooms LEEDS
• 12th Lincoln Drill Hall LINCOLN
• 13th Ashcroft Arts Centre FAREHAM
• 14th Arlington Arts Centre ARLINGTON
• 15th Philharmonic Hall LIVERPOOL
Photo Credit: Elly Lucas