‘A superb album from a woman who has nothing left to prove.’ (Oor)
It’s almost impossible not to lapse into superlatives when it comes ‘Weather Alive’, the latest album by British songwriter Beth Orton. But then her artistic bar was also immensely high. Orton had challenged herself with a bold dreamscape of how her album should sound. ‘What would ‘Nebraska’ sound like if it had drums or if Solange was the singer rather than Bruce Springsteen? What if ambient masterpieces like Talk Talk’s ‘Spirit of Eden’ or David Sylvian’s ‘Brilliant Trees’ came into alignment with Alice Coltrane?’
The result sounds stunningly sober but comes with a profound emotional uppercut. Toppers like Tom Skinner (The Smile / Sons Of Kemet) and Alabaster dePlume add a jazzy touch. As a result, the reviews were praise upon praise:
‘The best work of her career. Best New Music. 8.7.’ (Pitchfork)
‘Her most personal statement.’ (Uncut)
Beth Orton fans: pay attention! Beth Orton will also be present in AB on SUNDAY 28 MAY at the tribute to Harry Smith’s ‘Anthology Of American Folk Music’. She expressed her love for this bible of folk back in 1999: during The Harry Smith Project at the Royal Festival Hall she performed her own rendition of ‘Frankie’ by blues legend Mississippi John Hurt.
Concert Pictures © Saan Van Elsen