What it’s Like to…(1)

…listen to Ange Hardy’s new album, ‘Bring Back Home’.

It begins with the full, warm-bath sumputous sound.

Typically Angesmooth, you enjoy an instant immersion into the music. The spiky fiddle of Peter Knight adds superb embellishment to several tracks; the sting inside the musical honey pot. Just like all Ange Hardy music, every facet of the musicianship is superb and polished. Yet the cleverest trick that Ange pulls off is to make you think this is an incredible jam. This album sounds as if, one midsummer evening, you have found a group of the most incredible and creative people playing perfectly next to a stream in a forest. You pull up a log to sit in the setting sunlight and listen to natural creativity take on a life of its own.

Occasionally, without knowing why, a burst of emotion shoots through you. The reason for this burst will become clear when you know the lyrics and are familiar with the tracks. But on the first listen, it is as if you are a puppet as benign sadness or a thrill of joy tugs your strings.

When you first hear this album, the songs don’t sound new. They are more like old favourites you somehow have forgotten. They are unmistakenly folk yet with enough innovation and pin-point arrangement to sound fresh; it is like discovering green shoots on a pollarded and ancient willow.

If you haven’t listened to this album yet, I am excited for you yet strangely jealous of the musical treasure you are going to discover.