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The Creatures In the Garden of Lady Walton (Bonus Video Version)

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Album Review

The Clogs fifth full-length release builds on the avant-garde chamber ensemble’s foundation of kaleidoscopic, indie-classical instrumentals by adding equally unpredictable lyrics and vocals. Multi-instrumentalist Padma Newsome, who composed all of the songs during a 2005 residency at Italy’s botanical island paradise, Giardini La Mortella, has crafted a typically labyrinthine and cinematic collection of disparate melodies that draw inspiration from wells all over the world. The quartet is aided in this venture by a trio of guest vocalists including Sufjan Stevens and Matt Berninger (The National), but more specifically, opera singer-turned indie rocker Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond), who appears on six of the ten songs that make up Creatures in the Garden of Lady Walton. Like all Clogs releases, Lady Walton defies simple description. There are moments of impossible beauty (“Owl of Love”), dense, but structured dissonance (“Adages of Cleansing”), and of course, whimsical, classically minded, indie folk (“On the Edge”), that when consumed all together, feel like a perfectly executed mash-up of Aaron Copland, Dead Can Dance, Bill Frisell, and Shirley Collins.

Customer Reviews


Music the forest might make in the evening if it could and was feeling generous.


Formed: New Haven, CT

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Consisting of four classically trained musicians (Bryce Dessner, Padma Newsome, Rachael Elliott, and Thomas Kozumplik), the Clogs are an avant-garde chamber ensemble whose works encompass a wide range of styles, including (but not limited to) jazz, post-rock, and chamber music. They met in the late '90s at the Yale School of Music, where Newsome, originally hailing from the University of Adelaide in Australia, was studying on a Fulbright scholarship. Drawing from influences as disparate as romanticism,...
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The Creatures In the Garden of Lady Walton (Bonus Video Version), Clogs
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