Now: Mark McDowell – Dark Weave
Bristol, U.K. based Mark McDowell casts a troubadour’s spell with his amazing use of psychedelia, sunshine pop, baroque elements, all mixed with a thoroughly modern vibe. His latest release, Dark Weave, is entrancing, and as a matter of fact, his entire discography, available on Bandcamp, is highly recommended.
He has a series of EPs that are very engaging, and bring to mind a traveling minstrel with a fuzz box. Add a dose of cinematic touches, like string flourishes, and you have seriously addicting ear candy. There is also an element of spacey, early Pink Floyd and Moody Blues type production, that in my book, works like a charm.
Available as downloads (entire discography), or CD.
Then: John Martyn- Bless the Weather
Perhaps no other artist can be named the inventor of progressive folk rock other than the late, great John Martyn. There are relatively few originals in the world of rock music, but Martyn was one of a kind. His entire discography, even the later, more experimental releases, when his health was failing, is worth exploring.
His earliest albums were somewhat straight ahead acoustic blues and folk, but he went off into the stratosphere with his absolutely ground breaking classic, Bless The Weather. His voice was assured, and his unique guitar technique, along with the astonishing bass work of Pentangle’s Danny Thompson, and guitar accompaniment of the legendary Richard Thompson fit like hand in glove. Innovators are few and far between, Martyn defines the term.