Snow Palms – Origin And Echo

Although latterly less prolific in releasing recorded wares, veteran Ellis Island Sound, Phelan Sheppard and State River Widening polymath David Sheppard certainly hasn’t curbed his sonic ambitions.  Last heard officially in 2015 on his first proper solo LP Vertical Land - which sailed multi-instrumentalist ingenuity and erudite magpie-like … [Read more...]

Pete Astor – Do Nothing EP

Having already delivered a pseudo back-to-basics LP earlier this year, in the form of the largely satisfying if slightly undemonstrative Split Milk - for the sadly soon-to-dissolve Fortuna Pop! label - polymath Pete Astor returns relatively swiftly with a postscript-like one-off 7” through the obscure Feral Child Recordings imprint.  Once again … [Read more...]

Pete Astor – Spilt Milk

Having satisfyingly rejuvenated his formative role as a singing songwriter with 2011’s astutely ornate and somewhat overlooked solo Songbox album on Second Language - after a decade or so devoting the bulk of his creative time to The Wisdom Of Harry’s experimentalist art-pop and Ellis Island Sound’s largely wordless shape-shifting exotica - Pete … [Read more...]

David John Sheppard – Vertical Land

Since adopting a polymathic approach to music making twenty or so years ago David Sheppard has had no shortage of close collaborators to share outlets for his flights of instrumental imagination.  Working with the likes of school pal Keiron Phelan (within State River Widening and Phelan Sheppard), ex-Loft/Weather Prophet leader Peter Astor (in … [Read more...]

Snow Palms – Intervals

It feels like it’s been just a little too long since we last had an album featuring the multi-talented David Sheppard leading or co-leading the way.  If this writer’s memory is correct then the last time Sheppard jointly-headed-up a long-player officially was back in 2008 as one third of Smile Down Upon Us (a pan-global collaboration between … [Read more...]

Various Artists – Music And Migration II

Whereas Second Language’s last compilation from earlier this year, Minute Papillon, went for grand conceptual ambition (featuring 60 artists contributing 60 second pieces), this latest compendium goes for a far more manageable 14-track thematic sequel to 2010’s acclaimed Music And Migration.  Whilst in lesser hands, another collection of pieces … [Read more...]

Pete Astor – Songbox

Although it’s somewhat lazy to keep talking of Pete Astor in terms of his veteran status - list-dropping his past CV entries with The Loft, The Weather Prophets, The Wisdom Of Harry, Ellis Island Sound and as a solo trading artist – some context is important in highlighting his journeyman status that has been aided by several Doctor Who-style … [Read more...]

littlebow – The Edge Blown Aerophone

Whilst this new duo-led collaboration between Keiron Phelan (State River Widening, Phelan Sheppard, Smile Down Upon Us) and Katie English (Isnaj Dui, The Owl Service) holds an ostensibly restrictive and conceptual remit akin to other releases on the Second Language label, it’s far from being an insular or uninviting partnership.  Largely focused on … [Read more...]

Artists-On-Albums: AOA#8 (David Sheppard on Liberation Music Orchestra)

David Sheppard (Ellis Island Sound, State River Widening, Phelan Sheppard) on… Charlie Haden’s Liberation Music Orchestra (Impulse!, 1969) I first heard this album in a front room in Vauxhall, a little over a decade ago (thank you, Patrick).  I can still remember the warm, exciting and instantly familiar feeling it gave me. It has provoked … [Read more...]