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When the Bridegroom Comes (Songs for Women)

Sir Vincent Lone

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Album Review

When he's at home, Sir Vincent Lone is folky Scottish singer/songwriter Jackie Leven, who first debuted the alter ego with 2006's Songs for Lonely Americans. (The inspiration for the pseudonym is traced to Leven's record label, which balked at letting the singer/songwriter release more than one album every 18 months under his own name but was amenable to letting him record under a different name.) Like the first Sir Vincent Lone album, When the Bridegroom Comes (Songs for Women) adds atmospheric electronics and wide-ranging genre experiments to Leven's otherwise straightforward folk-rock songwriting, but this is a more overtly playful record. It's telling that one of the key tracks, "Coyne of the Realm," is a farewell to the recently deceased art rock singer Kevin Coyne, because in retrospect, Leven is largely adopting Coyne's musical model for the Sir Vincent Lone records. Like Coyne, Leven has his roots in the U.K. trad folk scene, but he also has a healthy interest in more forward-looking musical styles as well, and as a result, When the Bridegroom Comes (Songs for Women) contains songs like the hypnotic "Feels Like Rain But Isn't," a haunting cyclical melody for voice and keyboards, and the Tom Waits-like creepfest "Graveyard Marimba." Though a few songs, notably the gender-bending "Ballad of Geraldine," wouldn't sound out of place on one of Leven's "proper" solo albums, the appealing quirkiness of When the Bridegroom Comes (Songs for Women) makes a strong case for the dual personalities.

When the Bridegroom Comes (Songs for Women), Sir Vincent Lone
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