When I was first introduced to Southern Tenant Folk Union – on their third album, 2010's The New Farming Scene – it sounded as if T Bone Burnett had come down from ...
well, if not the mountain, then at least the Pentland Hills. This was raw and thrilling roots music that, in style and lyrical content, reached down through the centuries and stretched out across the miles.
There's another retro sound enveloping the vocal harmonies at the start of album number five, although this time I swear I can hear something akin to Pink Floyd's Dark Side Of The Moon in the arrangements. Others might not be as specific in their references, but there's a proggy haze drifting over the vocals right through the album, which resolves itself, via Pat McGarvey's five-string banjo, into a more countrified version of 1970s folk-rock.
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Push aside the stylistic trappings and you'll soon realise what a stealthily beautiful song Dark Passenger, the second track, is in its own right. Hello Cold Goodbye Sun, like all the recent work from this band, has its particular surface ripples but lasting depth beneath.