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Review: 'Dixon, Gareth'
'Orwell Court'   

-  Genre: 'Folk'

Our Rating:
This is a soft, delicate and quiet album. Breathy ambient folk is the underlying style of ‘Orwell Court’, but it’s a textured and subtly detailed album. It’s pitched as an album which bridges the gap between Nick Drake and Brian Eno, and it’s perhaps a fair summary. Obviously, it’s my job as a music critic to provide a critique, but sometimes expending verbiage seems pointless.

It’s not simply that to lift a variously attributed quote, ‘Writing about music is like dancing about architecture’, so much as a case of ‘less is more’ and that’s precisely the reviewing sentiment Dixon inspires with these seven beautiful songs. On the face of it, Orwell Court is a straightforward singer/songwriterly work, centred around acoustic guitar and voice. It’s all in the delivery, of course, and Dixon has a rare ability to conjure rich atmosphere and captivating melody.

‘The Big Lie’ brings a psychedelic edge and grows larger than the sum of its parts in a rising swell of sound, while penultimate track ‘The Solid World’, which sounds like the title of an early JG Ballard story, manifests as a delicate ambient / post-rock hybrid.

Closing an album with a cover is perhaps an unusual choice. But Dickson’s stripped-back acoustic rendition of Joy Division’s ‘Atmosphere’ with its reverby production is a masterpiece.

  author: Christopher Nosnibor

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Dixon, Gareth - Orwell Court