This is the follow-up to 2013’s more electronic and sampled-based album, Emmettronica, from the sometime Knifeworld and Chrome Hoof member.
Everything here is played on acoustic instruments by Elvin, who’s proficient on guitar and keyboards as well as other musical contraptions that require plucking, prodding or blowing, including mandolin, banjo and something called a “resonator slide guitar”. He’s aided by like-minded guests including Matt Stevens from labelmates The Fierce And The Dead, Stars In Battledress’ Richard Larcombe, Chloe Herington (Knifeworld/Chrome Hoof) and Beverly Crome (The Cesarians). French horn, trumpet, bassoon and cor anglais add to the swelling grandeur. Mixed and mastered by Mark Cawthra (North Sea Radio Orchestra, Arch Garrison), the resulting 16 tracks create a mood that is by turns poignant and playful, melancholic and chilling. The titles may be varied in tone – from Artificial Pterodactyls Over Leytonstone to Beyond Astronomy’s Reach – but there is a unified atmosphere that would suit a soundtrack for a movie involving numerous plot twists and turns. Intriguing. Paul Lester