Thursday, August 11, 2005
Knock knock. Who's there? It's Jo & Danny!
ARTIST It’s Joe and Danny
ALBUM The Quickening
LABEL Double Snazzy Records
Don’t be put off by the album cover - a middle aged man and woman sitting under a tree with a guitar in aged sixties clothes. Jo Bartlett and Danny Hagan conform to most stereotypes of hippie children. They dabbled with major labels, but now prefer to release their records themselves from the seclusion of a farmhouse in rural Wales. They rarely perform live, except at their own Green Man festival, and link the Friends of the Earth and the Lentil Protection League on their website.
Their music though, does not conform to stereotypes. Their mix of beats, synth and acoustic inspired the likes of The Beta Band and The Bees. Sure it’s laid back and acoustic, but it’s beguiling in its simplicity. The album opens with the first single ‘God’s closed his eyes’, and gently draws the listener in. It features beautiful harmonies and simple descending melodies; a theme continued on the rest of the album. Other standout tracks are Dying Kiss and In Spite of Love. The album feels relaxed, perfect for a summers day, or as the cover suggests, sitting by the river under a tree.