by tom johnson
An introduction, of sorts, but more like something half-forgotten, sentiments swept away in a harsh winter breeze before they could ever be finalised, set in stone. Shaped by Aberdeen, crafted in Glasgow, and dripping with Scottish traditions forgotten and found and full of dust; of the people and places, too, but more the small singular lives that wiggle through them, solemn and unhurried, like a worm through muddied earth, no idea of up and down, left and right. And no, they don’t care about your fucking cats either.
Lifted from a brand new album, released this coming November, “Blind” is the soft introduction, the considered foreword, to the work of Fair Mothers, the working name of Kevin Allan, who finally releases these quiet, simmering folk songs just as the days draw in for another stretch of winter with all its quiet rage and endless talk of bluster. Informed, beautifully, by Kathryn Joseph’s lingering incantations, which hover over this entire record like the shadows of passing clouds, “Blind” hangs like a loud silence in an empty room, felt in the ears and bones and then suddenly broken, leaving no trace at all but for the slightest ache of something changed.
Allan’s voice acts as the perfect foil for Joseph’s bewitching, hymnal backings, all rugged and dank, not uncaring but backed by enough knowledge to know that such sentiments never really get you anywhere. Quietly compelling throughout, “Blind” might be the record’s soft opening but it immediately resonates, setting the scene with a dexterity that grips and endures for far longer the length of the story it tells.
Listen to it in the here and now, and pre-order the vinyl via the links below.
‘Through Them Fingers Yours And Mine’ is release on 12″ vinyl in November, via Fox Food Records
You can pre-order it now, via Bandcamp