William D Drake: Revere Reach

Arresting fifth solo album from Ex-Cardiacs man.

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There aren’t too many singers who could pull off a line like ‘A giddy haze has come to me as I lead my donkey to water,’ butwith his querulous rasp ex-Cardiacs keyboard player/vocalist William D Drake does so with a jaunty conviction.

Replete with wry humour, the follow-up to 2011’s sublime The Rising Of The Lights has an out-of-time feel offering another surreally skewed view of an English village green and beyond; a fantasia where the bastions of normality are transposed into a curious place where nothing is quite as it seems. Joined by his regular musical repertory company that includes James and Richard Larcombe (Stars In Battledress) and woodwind player Nicky Baigent, Drake propels everything via his trademark harmonium and retro-sounding keyboards, lending the material a rustic quality. Yet such pastoral overtones are craftily subverted, and quirky time signatures are strafed by chugging horns, warbling organ and spooky celeste. In places the results are a peculiarly energetic amalgam of Michael Nyman-like minimalism crossed with a hybrid, rousing folk-rock. Revere Reach is richly detailed, consistently impressive and, at times, deeply affecting.

Sid's feature articles and reviews have appeared in numerous publications including Prog, Classic Rock, Record Collector, Q, Mojo and Uncut. A full-time freelance writer with hundreds of sleevenotes and essays for both indie and major record labels to his credit, his book, In The Court Of King Crimson, an acclaimed biography of King Crimson, was substantially revised and expanded in 2019 to coincide with the band’s 50th Anniversary. Alongside appearances on radio and TV, he has lectured on jazz and progressive music in the UK and Europe.  

A resident of Whitley Bay in north-east England, he spends far too much time posting photographs of LPs he's listening to on Twitter and Facebook.