Sairie – Scarlet and Blue EP

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The delicate folk songs of Sairie’s Scarlet and Blue EP transport you to remote floral landscapes and lush forests of England’s past.

The Brighton band plays gently melodic originals that feel so steeped in tradition, you’d swear that they were sourced from the Cecil Sharpe House’s folk archives. Sairie, which is comprised of Emma Morton on autoharp, Jon Griffin on guitar and Andy Thomas on bass, arrange the songs to allow room for the group’s pure vocals (handled by both Morton and Griffin) to breathe and shine through as the core of each composition. In this way, the songs could easily work as a cappella pieces, like something you might hear on an early Shirley Collins record. 

Songs like “Flowers of The Spring” are often showcases for Morton’s lilting, clear singing voice, which brings to mind a young Anne Briggs or Celia Humphris (of Trees). Meanwhile the instrumental backing emphasizes the darker undertones of each composition. In that same tune, the electric guitar that emerges in the chorus has a roughened bite to it that helps give the song a slight feeling of dread and unease.

Elsewhere on the record, spectral folk-pop is explored to great effect (“Winds of Sirocco”) and Morton and Griffin’s intertwining vocals weave a psychedelic fairy tale (“White Hill”), complete with bright pastoral imagery and eerie, surreal atmospherics.

If Mariee Sioux, Vashti Bunyan and The Incredible String Band are amongst your favorite artists, then you will adore this EP. You can get yourself a copy of it here.

-KH


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