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Review: 'Hantehir'
'Songs We Learned In Cornish'   

-  Label: 'Easy Action Records'
-  Genre: 'Rock' -  Release Date: '5.3.19.'-  Catalogue No: 'EARS146'

Our Rating:
This is the first of two new albums Hantehir have released as a follow up to last years triple album The Saving Of Caden.

Yes this album does exactly what it says on the sleeve as it's 11 songs mainly sung in Cornish with a couple in English but about Cornwall. So don't ask me what they are singing about on most of the album. It's a compilation of Cornish songs they have recorded during the bands 10 years together.

The album opens with Kana Pobonan that is a very pretty and quite bucolic folk song with some lovely strings it's nice and laid back. Tekka Ha Hwekka is sort of a folk-rock madrigal that reminds me of the Swedish band Hoven Droven a good bit and I love the sax that floats in and out of this tune.

Arloedthes A'n Lydn feels like they are sat in the middle of a clearing in a forest staring at the sky on mushrooms as the tree branches swirl around and the building cacophony engulfs you.

Dygoweth actually has vocals mainly in English on a song that has a cool indie rock feel to it with nice sax parts and almost feels like it should be played late at night in a field somewhere.

Om Gonfort Suite is the one song on both of the new albums but with different versions this one is a 10 and a half minute journey into the Cornish psychogeography of the bands collective minds opening with lush strings and treated percussion pulsing like a reminder of ancient Celtic drummers and legends. And then about halfway in it shifts into the myth telling lyrics, well I guess he's telling a myth as the guitars wail and gnash and engulf all around as the drums keep a steady rhythm as all around a storm is raging.

Plos Mi Du sounds like it should be the Cornish for Love Me Do but thankfully it sounds nothing like that might imply being more of a slow bucolic rumination that gently reaches for the open skies above as the guitar slowly distorts and moves around the acoustic and rumbles like thunder on a sunny day and then the hissing of the rain that comes from nowhere to drench our spirits.

The Carn Marth Song about the hills outside Redruth has a military march style snare drum as the battle and conflict at the centre of the song comes through the lyrics that are in English and wailing in pain against the incoming waves of guitars.

Bytegnns Kothman is a slow love song of sorts with a nice lush feel to the mainly acoustic guitars. Whatever Happened To Whitford? Well indeed good question but I'll need a translator if I'm to figure out the answer to the question, but it sounds like he might have had a bit of a break down and going off the rails somewhat no matter how steady the main guitars and percussion are everything else is going off around them.

St Day Song is about the feast dance held annually in Carn Marth and is rather jaunty and not at all Morris in nature this is more drinking lots of cider and mead and having a good time together around a bonfire. Onan Dew Tri is a rather brief coda that sounds like a nursery rhyme to close a most intriguing album.

Find out more at www.easyaction.co.uk https://hanterhir.com
  author: simonovitch

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