… and it’s fancy dress!
Amongst the hardest working acts on the live circuit, James Yorkston has announced that he will support Rodrigo Y Gabriela on UK dates throughout November (see below below), and also headlines his own Christmas Special at London’s Luminaire on Tuesday 19 December (details below)
Tuesday 19th December London Luminaire
Eat Your Own Ears and James Yorkston presents: A Christmas Special
311 High Road,
020 7372 7123
James Yorkston is a singer / songwriter in the best folksy tradition, weaving together a seemingly effortless mix of sweet melodies, haunting lyrics, irrelevant humour and the odd blast of harmonica. Tonight sees James play a solo set bringing on various guests throughout the evening.
As a member of Fife-based Fence Collective, PICTISH TRAIL has spent a good proportion of his year performing alongside fellow Fence compatriots King Creosote and others. However tonight he plays a set of his own tunes as heblends seemingly simple structures with intricate melodies of psychedelia-inflected folk, performed with warmth and a touch of irony. Think of an acoustic Beta Band jamming with The Beatles with a touch of The Beach Boys magic!
James Yorkston’s stunning third album, The Year Of the Leopard, like it’s predecessors Moving Up Country and Beyond The River confounds categories once again. Though not without its shadows, this is Yorkston’s most optimistic and uplifting record. If there’s a traditional side to it, it is following the tradition of individual singer-songwriter albums which conjure and inhabit a genre which lasts just as long as the needle’s in the groove.
Set for a September 25 release on Domino, the album will be preceded by two September London dates and followed by the release of the album’s first single, the poppy Steady As She Goes which is out 11 September. James will also tour in October, playing at least 19 dates across the UK with his band The Athletes. Details of the tour have just been announced and are as follows:
James Yorkston’s musical background has encompassed everything from garage punk to country rock, but he grew up in a small village in Fife, Scotland, and has been a long-time participant in the famed local Fence Collective, where music is cherished but not treated pompously and diversity and cross-fertilisation have always held sway. Yorkston’s music retains those qualities, plus a deep seam of rurality.
The Year of the Leopard features James’s own, very spare arrangements, blending his extreme-close-up vocals with an acoustic guitar, electric piano, clarinets, violin and concertina and a gently thrumming rhythm section. I’d love it if people had the same response to this album as I do to, say, Johnny Cash’s American Recordings III , or Jacques Brel, or Lal Waterson’s own songs, or that amazing new Scott Walker album – music that stands in its own world – music that isn’t in a crazed rush to exist solely in one genre¦ says Yorkston. We might add to that list the hushed, ineffable bits of John Martyn’s One World, Van Morrison’s St. Dominic’s Preview or Talk Talk’s Spirit of Eden. That last one connects directly with this album, because The Year Of the Leopard was produced by former Talk Talk member Paul Webb.
James Yorkston – The Year of The Leopard’
Cat# : WIG183
Release date : September 25th 2006
Yorkston has created an eclectic collection of gems which exceeds his own already extremely high standards¦ The List
Yorkston belongs in such rarified company as Talk Talk’s Spirit Of Eden’¦ UNCUT
Hushed and elusive beauty – Highly Recommended¦ Time Out
This is his sparsest and most intimate album – the restrained band sound like faded watercolours while Yorkston, on acoustic, sings so quietly and close to the mike that the listener feels compelled to climb into the speakers.¦ MOJO
Lovely, understated melodies, Autumnal arrangements and warm, wry lyrics¦ The Guardian
Quietly Captivating¦ Sunday Telegraph