14 Songs, 53 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

South-African born, U.K. raised Johnny Flynn delivers a debut album, recorded with his band the Sussex Wit, that brings British folk-rock back to life by recalling the tradition once popularized in the 1960s by the likes of Bert Jansch, Fairport Convention, and Pentangle. With a strong emphasis on acoustic guitars, a subtle cello, occasional violins, horns, and even spoons!, A Larum forges a campfire jamboree where Flynn’s spirited vocals lead the mild insurrection. Whether the band is kicking out its acoustic jams with “Leftovers” or relying on the sawing violins of “Sally,” or meditating over the sparse and brooding “Brown Trout Blues,” or leaving Flynn to serve up the upbeat guitar and vocal of “Tunnels,” there’s an expert sense of timing and drama that goes beyond a young troubadour and band only in their mid-20s. Flynn has worked as a Shakespearean actor and considers himself a poet. He throws himself with full commitment into these songs of poverty (“The Box”) and irreverent hope (“Tickle Me Pink”). For extra texture, “Hong Kong Cemetery” adds a funereal organ to seal its ominous, downtrodden fate.

EDITORS’ NOTES

South-African born, U.K. raised Johnny Flynn delivers a debut album, recorded with his band the Sussex Wit, that brings British folk-rock back to life by recalling the tradition once popularized in the 1960s by the likes of Bert Jansch, Fairport Convention, and Pentangle. With a strong emphasis on acoustic guitars, a subtle cello, occasional violins, horns, and even spoons!, A Larum forges a campfire jamboree where Flynn’s spirited vocals lead the mild insurrection. Whether the band is kicking out its acoustic jams with “Leftovers” or relying on the sawing violins of “Sally,” or meditating over the sparse and brooding “Brown Trout Blues,” or leaving Flynn to serve up the upbeat guitar and vocal of “Tunnels,” there’s an expert sense of timing and drama that goes beyond a young troubadour and band only in their mid-20s. Flynn has worked as a Shakespearean actor and considers himself a poet. He throws himself with full commitment into these songs of poverty (“The Box”) and irreverent hope (“Tickle Me Pink”). For extra texture, “Hong Kong Cemetery” adds a funereal organ to seal its ominous, downtrodden fate.

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