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Espers - Espers - LP -

Price per Unit (stuk): €29.95


Maybe it was when Nick Drake's "Pink Moon" inexplicably came beaming out of television sets far and wide selling Volkswagens, but there's been a disproportionate amount of interest lately surrounding the enigmatic canon of folk music from the late 60s and early 70s. As reverently packaged reissues from treasured shoulda-been folk legends like Karen Dalton, Jackson C. Frank, Dando Shaft, Linda Perhacs and established revivalist heroes such as Bert Jansch and Pentangle, Fred Neil, John Fahey, and Fairport Convention seemed to take up increasing amount of space in my CD changer, a slew of indie-bred legionnaires (Devendra Banhart, Iron & Wine, Animal Collective, Sufjan Stevens, Currituck Co, etc) seemed hard at work setting out to passionately revive the folk revival in their own wildly idiosyncratic ways.

For anyone who's seen so much as the album insert for any of these treasured older records, it makes sense that the indie community would fall head over heels for the Folk aesthetic; Bert Jansch looks like Stephen Malkmus' more literal twin, while Fairport Convention, covered in all things involving facial hair, Converse and corduroy, bear an uncanny resemblance to the incestuous communal trappings of the indie-royalty of Elephant 6. The postmodern landscape successfully tread by the likes of the White Stripes, The Strokes, The Rapture, and (The) Ryan Adams has arguably put a price-tag on the bourgeois "cleverness" of miming critical approved "tastes" from lost eras; a renewed interest in folk music's reliance on song rather than sound seems only natural.

Thankfully, Greg Weeks' steady stream of neo-folk records (culminating in 2001's landmark Awake Like Sleep and 2003's more esoteric, Slightly West) has been supplying listeners with a lush blend of psych-charged melancholia (a la Nico) and kaleidoscopic drones while always retaining beautifully baroque melodies as their focal point. However, it's his work with Espers, an expanding folk collective which also includes members Meg Baird and Brook Sietinsons, that accounts for some of his most accomplished work to date.

 

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