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Blackfield - Blackfield V album review

Duo’s 13-track song cycle that’s all at sea

Cover Art for Blackfield - Blackfield V

Album number five from the occasional duo in which Steven Wilson is partnered with multi-instrumentalist Israeli star Aviv Geffen, and further proof, if needed, that Wilson never sleeps.

Fans – and there are many – will know what to expect. Which is not to deride the sublime and sometimes beautiful sounds Blackfield make. Alan Parsons climbs on board for three songs, while the band’s palette is rich and assuredly dense. Strings stutter and fall, the tone can best be described as lush, gentle and reassuring. Oddly so, as the story takes place at sea and sometimes it feels as though something might be lurking just below the surface. They’re especially good on songs like the fragile Sorrys and the graceful How Was Your Ride?, a moment of stillness as they wait for the next wave and the inevitable squall.

Philip Wilding is a novelist, journalist, scriptwriter, biographer and radio producer. As a young journalist he criss-crossed most of the United States with bands like Motley Crue, Kiss and Poison (think the Almost Famous movie but with more hairspray). More latterly, he’s sat down to chat with bands like the slightly more erudite Manic Street Preachers, Afghan Whigs, Rush and Marillion. He ghosted Carl Barat’s acclaimed autobiography, Threepenny Memoir, and helped launch the BBC 6 Music network as producer and co-presenter on the Phill Jupitus Breakfast Show. Five years later he and Jupitus fronted the hugely popular Perfect 10 podcast and live shows. His debut novel, Cross Country Murder Song, was described, variously, as ‘sophisticated and compelling’ and ‘like a worm inside my brain’. His latest novel The Death And Life Of Red Henley is out now.