Alasdair Roberts, Neil McDermott and Tartine De ClousOkraina
Released: 17th December 2018
A fine mix of gallic and gaelic folk song, both traditional and covers, ushered in Okraïna’s lovely, signature packaging
“There is a sense of mirth rising within me as I riddle these notes down. I'm here at the Cube Cinema in Bristol with John Stevens from Qu Junktions in the garden talking music, while Rhodri Karim whizzes through setting up gear for Matana Roberts and Kelly Jayne Jones. They are in situ for three days for another playthecube.
All the while I lounge back and time-travel back to Dec '17, picturing the times we all shared with the musicians you hear in these recordings. To slow things down a wee touch is such a powerful gesture, it feels. Ali and Jamie Lindsay (from the Cube) were so gentle in setting up the framework for Tartine de Clous and Neil to join in and and spend five epic days and nights with us. Showing old and new films, talking, singing tight together around a table and then en masse with the Bristol Sacred Harp group, everything weaved around the Microplexian complex. The ad hoc series playthecube is inspired by olden-day folks stopping by settlements to sing, jest and make love for a hazy period, as well as urban fairytale jazz residencies and the desire to jig up the connections that frizzle between The Cube's curious volunteer workforce, visiting artists and our audiences when you have a little more time on your hands.
Over the two nights, Tartine de Clous, Alasdair Roberts and Neil McDermott entertained plenty. The computer capturing the music at the back of the auditorium and the exquisitely placed hanging mics, like flowers at a fête, all added to the recording angel ritual. On the first evening every breath, every track and each chair inch mattered; they shuffled things round and, on the second evening, the suite of song swept the crowd and the musicians together into a fine fettle.
To have this album and to hear these songs is to taste the stews we ate, the stories we swapped, the technology we manipulated and the people we touched. The cubic circles rippled and we all loosed a little, and the way I figure it, you can hear it.
Chiz Williams, Bristol, England (3rd May 2018)”