Alison Cotton - All Is Quiet At The Ancient Theatre
Limited Edition Yellow Vinyl - 300 Pressing on Friendly Recordings
All Is Quiet...' begins in the cold droned echoes of Nico's 'Frozen Warnings' but this is ’s lament for vanishing English customs, performance & countryside. Viola, harmonium & recorders bring a lost sound – the squeeze box rasp accompanying country dances, the deathly percussive march of 'A Tragedy In The Tithe Barn' and ballad themes of departure & waiting as in 'The Bells of St. Agnes'. 's music appears to be searching the past; there is stillness & desolation reminiscent of the tree stumped landscapes of painter Paul Nash. Where Nico's The Marble Index or Desert Shore are an icy tundra of harmonium & voice, 's viola and choral layers hold an earthy, distinctly English experimental resonance with early music modalities; these are stone images of the medieval & pagan age – a buried cast of players, people, traditions & craft. It's mournful, yes, though in the wavering viola drones the listener will find contemplative spaces of light & renewal. Originally a cassette release on Bloxham Tapes with a limited vinyl pressing by Cardinal Fuzz & Feeding Tube which sold out almost instantly with little press. This'll most likely be the last window on Cotton's wonderful solo debut. Coloured vinyl & altered artwork by Luke Drozd.