Travelling along the ancient road with The Silk Road..

13532968_1136428143093816_260219737519044595_nThe Silk Road was an expansive trade route network enabling Chinese silk to be exported and sold all over the place from two hundred years either side of the birth of Christ.  Or it was also an expansive dark web black market trading platform famed for selling drugs or other illicit items between 2011 until it was shut down by the FBI in 2013.

I checked in with founding member Tich and it turns out both of these things inspired the band name – the three hares symbol linked to the ancient trade route, although nobody really knows the origins of the images – but for the band, it and the name symbolise the universal connections people and places all have with one another.

I first saw The Silk Road the band back at Something To Smile About in their acoustic guise – but I’ve known singer and guitarist Tich for over a year now, and we’ve often nattered at Ferocious Dog gigs about their output.  With extra performances at Estival and Wistful to take in, they’ve also been in the studio to produce a four track EP (well, really it’s five tracks), so it was great to finally get my hands on it courtesy of Tich at the weekend.

As I tend to do I’ve been hammering it on my drives to and from work this week – since I’ve clocked up over five hours of car time in the last two days (damn you, M42!) I feel like I’ve gotten to know this little collection very well indeed.  That said, I’ve certainly not tired of listening to it whilst idly cursing the strange and unexplained concentration of traffic as I trog to and from the West Midlands each day.


Freeborn Al / 19th July 2016 / Music, Other Bands, Photos / 0 Comments

Way on down South with Sam Jones..

13267925_784096115059711_8153355590290363630_nI’m a bit overdue writing about Sam Jones‘ new EP – he put it out at the back end of May, I excitedly downloaded it, listened to it, loved it, then got distracted in a flurry of new music acquired after Bearded Theory and Something to Smile About – but I’ve re-found it and it’s been accompanying me to and from work for the last couple of days.  It’s a splendid collection of songs.

Sam is similar to Brad Dear in that he has a voice that doesn’t belong with someone so young – his range of gritty blues through to more melodic folksy stylings seem effortless live when you see him, and it’s true of the recorded tracks too.  Couple that with awesome guitar work – and layers of backing instrumentals and percussion laid down by his producer Jack during the studio time in London, and you have five special tracks.

It’s funny how the music industry works – you have the Ed Sheerans and Jake Buggs of this world who sky-rocket to stardom, I always wonder what that catalyst is – don’t get me wrong, I rather like Jake Bugg.  Ed Sheeran less so, but I do wonder what spark of luck thrusts their undeniable talent into such fierce limelight whilst someone like Sam and countless other performing artists I know are left – to coin a phrase from Gaz Brookfield – one step left of limelight.


Freeborn Al / 14th June 2016 / Music, Other Bands, Photos / 0 Comments