Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Widow's Weed

I've long believed that there aren't many types of music that can't be improved by the addition of a Black Sabbath riff somewhere. A strategically-placed gonzoid riff is like Tabasco sauce or balsamic vinegar - it can transform the driest bowl of chips or the dullest plate of greens into a satisfying meal.

Which brings me to Folk Rock. Now, I should like Folk Rock, after all, Highway 61 Revisited and John Wesley Harding are two of my favourite albums. However, I find that most of what goes under the banner of Folk Rock these days is heavy on the Folk and light on the Rock; all those plaintive acoustic numbers strummed by scruffy young mean with beards don't do much for me. That sort of thing would be much improved by some Sabbath riffs.

I think Espers get this. The track below is from their second album, Espers II, which I've been playing a lot recently (the fact that they called their second album Espers II already endears me to them: not enough of that these days if you ask me). The album is Folk Rock that's not scared of electric guitars, and this particular track even has some Sabbath riffs to add an extra air of menace. I think it's great. They're on eMusic, if you're a subscriber; if not the album was going cheap on Amazon last I looked, and while you're there you could even pick up their third album, called - you've got it  - Espers III. How can you not like this band?

9 comments:

  1. I know little about Folk Rock, indeed I have not heard either of the favourite albums you mention, but very much appreciated the Espers link. All good!

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  2. Oh you should hear Highway 61 Revisited, it really is brilliant. One of those few classic 60s albums that really is as good as everyone says it is.

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  3. Just ordered Espers II. Thanks for sharing.

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  4. I've taken the bite with Highway 61...and ordered it from Amazon (under £4).

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  5. Hope you like them, fellas. BA, I think you'll like the Espers album, it's quite proggy, and just look at those song titles: Children of Stone, Dead King and best of all, Mansfield & Cyclops!

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  6. You know what, I've never heard them? Are they any good? Or are they like The Incredible String Band?

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  7. Thumbs up for the Highway 61 album, I was listening to it today whilst on the A9 of all 'highways'. Quite perfect!

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  8. It's a classic, Jimmy, so many great tracks. And perfect for the A9, especially if you were driving through Brora when Desolation Row came one!

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