Boomkat Product Review:
After last week's truly gorgeous 'Sunshrine' cd on Digitalis, and a contribution to the crucial 'Gold Leaf Branches' compilation - this is James Blackshaw's latest epic, this time for Important Records. Again using the 12-string guitar as his instrument of choice (occasionally embellishing the recordings with harmonium and subtle percussion) Blackshaw has produced something which seems set to catapult his name up alongside peer Jack Rose and the late, great John Fahey. Enough about the pedigree and skill on offer here though, in the end it is the music that counts, and what sets Blackshaw apart from the others is his innate ability to craft the most beautiful, heart-stopping tunes from the most basic ingredients. His extended compositions never feel too long and resist becoming technical for the sake of it - something which happens often in this scene, and his shorter compositions never feel chopped off or rushed, instead his works feel perfectly measured and sensibly realised. 'O True Believers' is underpinned by an immense emotional depth; something that makes this an essential purchase for any followers of wyrd folk or gorgeous home listening music that has already made 2006 ripe for becoming a vintage year - Hugely recommended!