16 October 2020 (released)
04 October 2020
Lunatraktors debut album ‘This IS Broken Folk’ announced them to the music world last year, shocking and delighting in turns with a completely original take on folk music.
This EP opens with ‘Black Raven II’, a new take on the song that opened the album with Carli Jefferson playing a deep and martial drumbeat against Clair Le Couteur’s moving and dark vocals, almost unbearably emotional. Chilling and intense, it is a great treatment of the song.
‘16000 Miles’ shows a very different side of the duo as they take on an Irish/Australian tale of a young man who has fallen on rougher times than he is used to and is working as an itinerant stone worker. Wonderfully eccentric percussion really underpins what is essentially an Australian folk song but really makes the song come alive.
Now, the thing I get from everything I have heard from Lunatraktors is that they are a real folk duo with a great regard for the form. That they have a very different view of the rhythms and tonality of folk music does not detract from their love of the music. So when they play a version of ‘Holly & Ivy’ – as they do here – with the rhythm and percussion created by Carli’s tap dancing, the harmonies underpinned by a harmonium, they keep the essence of the song intact but create a very different and very wonderful sound to bring the song to a different kind of life.
I find Lunatraktors music to be utterly intriguing and compelling – it is folk music, just not what so many would make.