Dark, English melancholia

Now on his fifth album in six years, Ed Harcourt shows many an ‘artist’ how being productive doesn’t mean a drop in quality. Recorded, like his debut ‘Maplewood’, on an old piano in his Grandmother’s cottage in Sussex he has once again captured that dark, English melancholia and set it to some surprisingly upbeat melodies. After the sessions at grannies’ he moved to Toe Rag studios, famous for their authentic 60’s recording equipment, where he was joined by guests Graham Coxon, who adds jazzy guitar to ‘Visit From The Dead Dog’, and BJ Cole, slide guitarist extraordinaire. Ed protests that this isn’t a post wedding bliss album, and with some of these themes that’s easily supported, but his wife does appear on the touchingly sparse ballad ‘Late Night Partner’. Harcourt again confirms his status as a uniquely English talent who continues to strengthen his reputation and build an ever more impressive back catalogue.

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