Once upon a time, decades ago and when all was good in the world, there were record labels (remember those things) that you could rely on. I mean that in the sense that if they were on your list of labels to 'like' you could trust that a new release would be at the very least likeable and most possibly lovable even if totally unheard?
Why would one worry about the Iron Curtain, The Cold War or 'mutually assured destruction' when you have a comforting blanket like that? Or indeed the anti-war artists nibbling at the mainstream... be it in response to events in Malaya, Korea, Vietnam or simply part of a vision of utopia?
Well, while we haven't reached our panacea yet though the signs are not as poor as some might believe, at least we've got dependable labels back and that is a damn good start.
One of them, Bella Union, is fifteen now and its teenage birthday party was the Friday of End Of The Road Festival 2012 across all four music stages with bands from the Bella Union family. Like all the best parties it started rather early and finished rather late...
Suffice it to say that it was not what they would have chosen.
Bella Union does not however just help new artists on the way by releasing their first album... indeed it only signed this one for her second, 'Time Traveller' (2011), although at 22 she is hardly an old-timer. I saw her live at Truck Festival last year, performing with a band, and am now of the opinion that she is better live as a solo artist as here for the band tended to overwhelm the purposefully-fragile beauty of her song-writing and never more so would it be true than of the brand new songs that she essayed last Friday. This really is Alessi in Wonderland and (the prospect of) album #3 is a reason to continue living.