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Review: 'Junkboy'
'Sovereign Sky'   

-  Label: 'Fretsore records/Bandcamp'
-  Genre: 'Folk' -  Release Date: '25.9.20.'

Our Rating:
This is a re-issue of an album that came out way back when in 2014 and had some distribution issues that meant it was rather overlooked at the time, becoming the band claim like the Private Press LP's of the 60's and 70's that collectors hunt for years to find in junk shops on Canvey Island, well this being the modern world this album is now getting a full reissue with one additional song.

The album opens with Priory Park and I assume recordings of the sounds from the park that the acoustic guitar is strummed over like they are in love with late 60's Bert Jansch and are bored of hanging out at Peter Pans playground.

Redwood has breathy sort of whispered vocals over an acoustic and minimal electric guitar with occasional violin flourishes as they try to evoke the mighty Californian Redwoods.

Release The Sunshine is a bit like Lambchop or Clem Snide a gently melancholic summer song to chill out too. Salt Water is for one of those lazy days at the beach where there is almost no swell and everything is calm and chilled out. And the tide is in, so you don't go squelching around in the mud.

Rainfalls carries on the gentle folk stylings as this is in praise of the rain coming from the sky, I like the pitter pattering of the rain on the cymbals at one point in this song that reminds me of Great Lakes.

Stormy Weather is a song title they really should have been persuaded not to use, as you can never compare to the Stormy Weather of Billy Holliday and Lena Horne et al so that it will always come off badly in comparison. Oh dear this is wimpy and forlorn bucolic meandering with some lush strings but really I'll be sticking on Etta James Stormy Weather after this to hear Stormy Weather done properly, some song titles are sacrosanct and this is one of them.

Red Letters is the perfect title coming after the Red Letter issue that is naming the previous song Stormy Weather, this isn't as angry as it should be, rather it's whispered hushed vocals almost sly putting across the problems against the percussion and sting accompaniment that is rather restrained with a nicely stormy instrumental section that feels rather textural.

Amber Glow is more laid-back gentle rather textured almost ambient folk prog rock. Sovereign Sky the title track wants to the sort of song that is spread around for being perfect for being blissed out, too laid back, staring at the sky, listening to this as you melt away dreaming of Nick Drake.

Belo Horizonte has a very 60's French coffee house feel to it perfect for eating Gateau and watching life go by too also one of the best things on the album.

Images, Colours, Coffee sparse, gentle, bucolic. Water Wheel is very gently persistent like a constantly turning Water Wheel that your sat staring at all day long.

The reissue closes with the bonus song Could We Be Two a folksy love song it's a bit more upbeat than the rest of the album and as they fall in and out of love they never know if they can make it together.

If you feel you missed out in 2014 or don't want to miss out this time around find out more at https://www.facebook.com/junkboytheband/ https://junkboytheband.bandcamp.com/album/sovereign-sky
  author: simonovitch

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