We Are Kin - …and I know… album review

Oddball, quirky, yet enticing second helping from the Manchester quartet.

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You never quite know what to expect from We Are Kin. On their second album, the Mancunian foursome splay themselves across the musical hemispheres, being as capable of jazz fusion as of folk ambience. The upshot is that …and I know… is quite startling and striking.

The longest tracks, …that one day… and …goodbye, have passages of contemplation, yet the approach is elastic enough to suddenly burst into something altogether more primal. Emma Brewin-Caddy’s vocals joust neatly with Dan Zambas’ guitar and keyboard strides. The pair show a composed understanding of how to move from a gentle breeze to a more stormy passage. The shorter tracks also have much to commend. Ramsay Janini’s flute plunges bring a poise and furtiveness to …we’ll have to say…, and the generally sedate mood is nicely stirred up on the more gregarious Radio.

We Are Kin refuse to be cunningly bundled into a genre. They draw here from a selection of influences, including Kate Bush, Björk, Van der Graaf Generator and Steven Wilson. But when expertly mixed together, as it is throughout, you have something that becomes a unique experience. Understated and low key, …and I know… is formidable.