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Mostly Autumn: Dressed In Voices

Folky prog posse embrace darkness for eleventh LP.

Singers of seasons, players of Floyd-tinged folk-prog, Mostly Autumn have been at one with nature and sweet, pagan-ish tunes for nearly 20 years. Now they’ve written a concept album about the impact of murder. It’s a blackened change of tack, but it could be one of the best musical decisions mainman Bryan Josh has made.

The plaintive, storytelling-through-song aspect – propelled by Olivia Sparnenn’s prettily articulated vocals – may arouse suspicion from those less keen on new-age girly singing (complete with ‘daisy chains’, ‘laying by rivers’ and other woodland frolics, in Skin On Skin). And yet sharpened, majestic overtones and quietly ominous moments make this album a genuinely commanding prospect.

Symphonic qualities develop in Not Yours, and as the melancholy narrative grows, some exquisite tones emerge – with moving, original vocal strains and guitar lines singing out of the title track. A pretty, imaginative dive into the dark side.

Polly is Features Editor at Classic Rock magazine, where she commissions regular pieces and longer reads (including new band coverage) and writes a few things. She also writes for Louder, Prog and Metal Hammer, and talks about songs on the 20 Minute Club podcast. In her spare time she writes fiction and cooks.