Songs of Misfortune
John Wesley Harding's Love Hall Tryst
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The Love Hall Tryst, the side project from John Wesley Harding, finds the elegant and razor-tongued troubadour rubbing shoulders with British folk giants like the Watersons, the Copper Family, and A.L. Lloyd. A companion piece to his 2005 historical novel Misfortune, these Songs of Misfortune are sung mostly a cappella by Harding, singer/songwriters Kelly Hogan and Nora O'Connor, and Edinburgh-based comic/actor/baritone Brian Lohmann. The four voices blend remarkably well, utilizing the natural reverb of their abandoned Troy, NY, Savings Bank recording location like a cavernous tunnel beneath the Thames. This is classic English folk music with a twist. It's nearly impossible to pick out Harding's contributions amidst the arsenal of traditional ballads and folk songs, as his vernacular rivals that of Charles Dickens himself — his highly Victorian novel revolves around a cross-dressing heir/heiress — and while the instrumentation is sparse (there is the occasional hurdy-gurdy and two of the songs receive the full-on rock treatment at the record's end) and the themes dark with murder, treachery, and lust, there is a bawdy joy that radiates throughout. It's as if Harding and his co-conspirators were actually conspiring against something rather than painting in the audio portion of a grand fairytale, and it's a testament to their infective mischievousness that the listener so effortlessly gets swept right up along with them.
Top Albums and Songs by John Wesley Harding's Love Hall Tryst
||Female Rambling Sailor||Songs of Misfortune||3:53||$1.69||View in iTunes|
||Lord Bateman||Songs of Misfortune||6:13||$1.69||View in iTunes|
||Do Not Fear the Dark||Songs of Misfortune||2:59||$1.69||View in iTunes|
||Joan of Arc (The Ballad of la Pucelle)||Songs of Misfortune||3:46||$1.69||View in iTunes|
||Lord Lovel||Songs of Misfortune||2:35||$1.69||View in iTunes|
||The Sanguinary Butcher||Songs of Misfortune||3:48||$1.69||View in iTunes|
||Shallow Brown||Songs of Misfortune||3:48||$1.69||View in iTunes|
||Lambkin||Songs of Misfortune||3:06||$1.69||View in iTunes|
||The Lady Dressed In Green||Songs of Misfortune||2:45||$1.69||View in iTunes|
||The Abandoned Baby||Songs of Misfortune||3:27||$1.69||View in iTunes|
||Jack In the Green||Songs of Misfortune||2:10||$1.69||View in iTunes|