Various Artists - Dog Days, Devil Fish & Darkest England

2017 compilation

Dog Days, Devil Fish & Darkest England - Various Artists

the bright young folk review

Dog Days, Devil Fish & Darkest England: Songs & Tunes From 25 Years of The Leigh Folk Festival a collection of tracks from Leigh folk festival’s regular performers and those who will be performing this year Dog Days is an absorbing genre-busting collection of tracks that will challenge anyone to leave behind their musical comfort zone.

Dog Days, sold in vinyl with a free digital download (for those to whom it matters this review is from the digital) will be sold throughout this year’s Leigh folk festival. Disappointingly, only one track is a live recording from the festival, with the rest being studio recorded. While some will welcome the absence of crowd noise it does rob Dog Days of a festival feel. Regardless Dog Days is a fantastic collection of music.

Predominately, Dog Days is dreamy and atmospheric, folk chill. The album’s third track, Standing on the Shore by Owl Service, is a fantastic introduction to this sound.

Side B, featuring three tracks, each lasting over five minutes, is where Dog Days really comes into itself. Each track is absolutely engrossing. It is twenty-five minutes of music that deserves to be listened to in a single undistracted listening. It would make a great accompaniment to a nice summer day and a cup of pimms.

For the purists out there tracks such as All Tomorrow’s Parties/Schottische pour Drella, Great Uncle Henry/Waiting for Rain, and Bold Riley/Charlie’s March, will give you your fill.
Despite Dog Days’ experimental sound the change is one that is evolutionary rather than revolutionary. While the tracks may not be what folk fans are typically use to the change is one that is entirely comfortable.

Many folk fans may start their folk collection with at least one compilation, probably one prefaced as ’an introduction to…’. Dog Days is the compilation for taking a collection to the next level. The music and the artists playing are different and new. Grab your laptop as you’ll inevitably be googling artists to find out more.

Blow off the cobwebs and explore new horizons, put Dog Days on and explore new horizons this summer.

Christopher C Leslie

Released by Thames Delta Recording Co. on 2 May 2017.
Full title: Dog Days, Devil Fish & Darkest England : Songs & Tunes From 25 Years Of The Leigh Folk Festival.

Side A
1. #9 : Bells (Our Lady Of Lourdes) - Sonic Detritus
2. Great Uncle Henry / Waiting For Rain - Rob Harbron & Emma Reid
3. Standing On The Shore - The Owl Service
4. Jamie Foyers - Alasdair Roberts
5. Lake - Lost Harbours
6. When You Have A Hammer - Alex Rex
Side B
1. Abigail - Jason Steel
2. On Reflection - Trevor Watts & Peter Knight
3. Tilbury Jack - Estuary Song Writing Project
Side C
1. Fine Silica - Emily Portman
2. Fresh As A Sweet Sunday Morning - Dark Globes
3. Riddles - Dark Patrick
4. Bold Riley / Charlie’s March - Danny Pedler & Rosie Butler-Hall.
5. Holloway - Oliver Cherer
Side D
1. The Outlandish Knight - Josienne Clarke And Ben Walker
2. Wren Sailing Girls - The Diamond Family Archive
3. All Tomorrow’s Parties - Philip G Martin
4. Deus Emin (Improvisation) - Laura Cannell
5. Julie Dies At The End - M. G. Boulter
6. #2 : Curlew - Avian Sonic Detritus

Various Artists discography