Monday, November 10, 2014

Lotte Mullan, Heg & the Wolf Chorus and The Moulettes - Marnhull Acoustic Sessions

It is fair to say that it has not always proven easy to tempt sufficient numbers to commit their Sunday evening to acoustic music, however exceptional, in an intimate (as in less than 100 seat) venue in rural North Dorset. I wonder, and very much hope, that the well-attended event will be seen as something of a game-changer.
The Moulettes were the big draw and quite rightly so, but something that those drawn in by that possibly appreciated even more was the whole package. I knew what to expect in that sense but I too had never seen either of the support acts live before. I don't worry about that too much; once I have the measure of some event or other  I'm happy to take it on trust and buy a ticket. A few misses are part of the rough-and-tumble and have, taken over time, been far overshadowed by the surprise hits.
First to play was Lotte Mullan - and I have an admission here: not only had I never heard her play live I had never even heard of her at all.

Her songs are pretty intense and personal.
She released 'Claw Marks EP' earlier this year and an LP will follow in Spring 2015 by the looks of things. I did think about asking what the title might be but I never quite summoned up the courage before it was too late and things had moved on.
The next to play was Heg and the Wolf Chorus in a diminished line-up as a three-piece (they should be five) owing to the winter lurgies. I was at least aware of them and some of their music but again had never seen them play live. I  managed a pretty poor job of photography too. Please believe me that this band sounded a whole lot better than this looks! I need to see them live again.
Dramatic it most certainly is - the songs and the arrangements both.

This also tuned out to be the perfect bridge between Mullan's introspection and The Moulettes decidedly cosmic perspective - from the title track from LP 'Constellations' to a brand new track pondering the secret life of nematode worms.

So new was it that the rest of the band left Hannah Miller to play it all by herself, on Ruth Skipper's auto-harp!

That, and the real possibility that the set would dissolve in fits of giggles at any moment, only made it seem even more surreal and wonderful. It was a long set but still it was over far too soon. That despite the fact that they played two encores, one of which was Songbird, from the LP The Bear's Revenge.
This is the whole band in action.
There is much more that I could add and in time I probably will. The above is probably sufficient to explain why I think that events such as this matter very much indeed.

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