Cate Le Bon: Mug Museum

Super Furries-endorsed singer/songwriter is our cup of tea...

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Moving in the same circles as prog pop stars Super Furry Animals and Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci, it’s surprising we haven’t lauded this Welsh solo artist before. Her debut release Edrych yn Llygaid Ceffyl Benthyg (Looking In The Eyes Of A Borrowed Horse to the rest of us) was recorded in her native tongue, and showed Le Bon to be a welcome addition to this rich seam of leftfield innovators.

Album three, Mug Museum was recorded in LA with Noah Georgeson (Joanna Newsom, Devendra Banhart), and it’s a gentle amble through a 1970s land of grey and pink that’s much closer to our hearts, coloured by the Canterbury scene, Syd Barrett and her Camarthenshire home.

Le Bon specialises in airy, understated songs that are hugely reminiscent of Kevin Ayers – opener I Can’t Help You finds the swing of Singing A Song… snuggled next to Roxy sax stings. next to Roxy sax stings. It’s Le Bon’s articulated mezzo that will either attract or repel and the production is so warm and organic that you can hear the piano stool creaking as she performs the hauntingly odd title track.

That she’s selling her own range of handcrafted mugs to go with the release surely proves she really does belong in these pages.