"Heathen Hymns"

by Octopi Mills

Here we have something from Rise Above records. We know of Lee Dorrian's legacy, and how he has found some exceptional bands and given them a record deal. Once again we see a female vocalist in a "doom" sort of circle, and she has said they are close to folk rock. To be imprisoned in reality makes us use certain words that sometimes are confining, and we know that even though it happens, no two doom or folk music could be exactly the same if they chose- given the artist's approach... 

With an album cover that is pure English and something like the Cottington fairy photos , I put myself into a prison and recline as I listen to the first song, which is not bad at all for such a style- it recalls a seventies or sixties sort of feel, and incorporates melodies in an original way. "Four Birds" is a sort of multi-cultural platter that lost love unwashed; and threatens hippy notions. In the same sense that Led Zeppelin married eastern styles with modern and old European folk as well as southern blues, so too Galley Beggar follows a similar blending of styles, though without the modern era of their day and without the said relevance of the comparison. The acoustic guitars of the album are strung with some novel moments and add greatly to the compositions. The vocals have the ability to try different moods and scenarios, though you will not find them in going off too far into wild places.

As I relax as one might who is in the shade tree of a lost, mild summer I sip there of a cool peach tea and chuckle idiotically in the excessive comfort of this.I want things that are not there; like acoustics that make bat-wing clouds overhead or clocktower bells of a percussive nature- Bee keeping and candle making turned to music and mixed with  the hooves of astral horseback riding and woodwind sounds carried by way of cemetery woods...I want ringing strings of copper that brightly stir with wild breezes and a deeply plucked bass that has a low end screech like some old beast trapped in some old well. I know I cannot hear or have these things and waste further time in my prison of defective cells and chromosomes here...

"Moon and Tide" is not the same moon and tide that pulls me, but as I belabor the point of words and individuality I rediscover old arts of a bygone age before the song even comes on; when it does come on I nearly cheated it of its identity as I thought things that had nothing to do with it entirely. "Let No Man Steal Your Thyme" is a reworking of a song I have never discovered and I take note of the clever title. "My Return" is the final song and makes you taste lemons as it beats around old bushes of once, and ties off the album with parts sounding afar and near, and I must go into the Friday afternoon now and may never meet the folk again. In parting I wonder what they may achieve, but also drift into thoughts of ant colonies and favor the imaginings of the black ones. The weather is green with spring and fair here, and the sound is as subtle as a wood bee who eats into the beams of the porch which houses my mind...See you on the trail again, strangers, and perhaps soon enough.