Matt Berry - Kill The Wolf

A fruitful imagination

Orotund actor, comedian and
writer Matt Berry – late of The
IT Crowd, The Mighty Boosh
and Garth Marenghi’s
Darkplace, for starters – could
be the James Mason of his
generation, rolling in voiceover
clover, were it not for
a startling propensity to burst
into adamant song. It came as
little surprise, therefore, that Berry’s 2011 acid-folk album
Witchazel was as accomplished
as it was: but more than a few
listeners were taken aback by
its apparent sincerity, give or
take the odd (very odd) lyric.

Kill The Wolf is arguably
even more impressive than
its precursor in this respect:
a mandolin, woodwind and
tremolo guitar-inflected sound
picture of the brown downs,
harvest fecundity, fire-lit rites
and crow-black folklore of
sweetly sinister old England.
Accordingly, Gather Up and the
enticingly melodious October
Sun come across like refugees
from the Wicker Man
soundtrack: postcard
depictions of beaming, ruddy-cheeked,
field-tilling sons and
daughters of toil, but with
a darkly unknowable subtext.
While Knock Knock and The
Signs admittedly veer close
to theatrical, declamatory
pastiche, Solstice – which
laudably endeavours to track
the journey from the shortest
to the longest day – is nine-and-
a-half minutes of bona-fide
neo-prog: a shimmering
three-way between Camel, the
Super Furries and David
Gilmour. 

3 stars 3 stars 3 stars

Acid Jazz | AJXLP 327 (CD / LP)

Reviewed by Oregano Rathbone
<< Back to Issue 415

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