seatman and powell

Incoming November time where it’ll appear on a limited 10 inch pressing on translucent green wax through KS Audio in conjunction with Belbury Music, the ‘broken folk’ EP finds Keith Seatman re-forging alliances with Douglas E Powell with the occasional interruption from Jim Jupp aka Belbury Poly. I don’t admitting that this has been serenading our listening space for a day or two now since appreciably arriving in our in box. Collecting together five tracks, one of which a very special and exclusive mix by Jim Belbury, the set features four reworkings of tracks originally found lurking on Seatman’s ‘a rest before the walk’ and ‘all hold hands and off we go’ albums. ‘Broken Folk’ lessens up on Seatman and Powell’s previous excursions into the dark, the disturbed and the disquieting instead opting to corral and channel their previous visitations into a more folk ghosted serene. That’s not to say that ‘Broken Folk’ isn’t without the trademark tropes of the surreal, the haunted and the fractured. Instead a pure psychotropic feast lays in wait that finds Seatman and Powell assuming a same page shared mind to join the dots of hauntology with a disparate array of psychedelic and wyrd folktronic waltzes. Throughout this somewhat melancholic dream state, haunted echoes walk forlornly, adrift between the fractured apertures of time and space without points of reference, locked and lost in an endless recurring loop with Seatman applying his craft to create portals whose paths change and shape shift with each additional listen. Lost in a twilight haze of spectral fizzes and the industrial hum of shadowy electronics, ‘my morning ritual’ weaves an off centering Floyd-esque mosaic as were reflective and melancholically crushed by a tear stained and deeply at loss Steven Wilson / Porcupine Tree. Trading woozily toned souring Ghost Box motifs, the dream draped pastoral prettiness of ‘Mr Metronome’ is etched hauntingly by a soft psychedelic hazing whose bad tripping floaty aura is found navigating the more darker and senses fracturing quarters of Edward Ka-Spel’s considerable back catalogue whereupon Syd references are not lost. Sore thumb ‘boxes with rhythms in’ breaks the hypnotic mould momentarily, opting for a straight ahead proto kaleidoscopic flavoured slice of day-glo post punk which had we been of a guessing mind, might well have said was the work of a certain AB Leonard, still such is its warping soft psych nuances that admirers of the Cleaners from Venus are heartily advised to make it your first point of reference. Wrapping up matters, title track ‘broken folk’ here with a Seatman / Powell rephrasing and a Jupp interpretation, perhaps provides the set with its centerpiece, the former drawing from the spirit of an as were mid-way stopping point between a youthful ‘mothers, daughters and other songs’ era Tunng and Dark Captain Light Captain both under the watchful influence of Beatglider. With its twinkling music box mosaics and ethereal electronic wisps, a spectral visitation emerges with ghostly glimpses of forgotten yesterday’s all beautifully weaved into a mesmeric eerie. Left in the hands of Jim Belbury, matters are slowed a tad and the haunting familiars bedeviling the updated Seatman / Powell are rewired into a pulsing fixed stare electronic mayday dance which in truth put us in mind of the much missed Working for a Nuclear Free City. All very essential, but then, did you really need me telling you.

Further references …….


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