...what makes listening to James Yorkston holding forth so appealing is the fact that his doleful and acidic barbs are often aimed at himself or used to propel the story...
This could be one of those gateway LP’s allowing the folkie ingénue into a veritable Narnia of treasured recordings.
There’s an added richness and canniness to this LP that was only hinted at in previous releases; and a relaxed pace that suits his muse very well.
"Yorkston sees himself as part of a different tradition – he sees himself as working in a similar way to people like Can and Scott Walker, people who don't so much blend and merge genres as smash them to pieces and leave music that cannot be categorised. I'm not sure from the evidence of Yorkston's three albums that I'd put him in such a tradition (and can there be a category of the uncategorisable?) "
Attempts were gamely made by Mr Y to play Mother Sky by Can but, 30 seconds in, this mighty project dissolved in a fit of laughter.
"I don't consider what I do to be traditional folk music at all. However, we do get people coming to our shows, expecting traditional folk. They can be disappointed, there can be friction. "
Finally, I was carried downstairs to see, YES! A London band. Honest, a real one.
Purveyors of ersatz music will always have the edge on those who make personal music, uninfluenced by fashion and rock's back catalogue. All the more reason, therefore, to trumpet artists like James Yorkston and Adem.