On Sunday 1st of March, Contemporary Folk artist Rachel Sermanni returned to Café INDIEpendent for a specially scheduled sunday show in association with The Mouth Magazine. Her first visit was a great success and requests were made for a return, if possible. Rachel herself wanted to come back, and so with a new album out soon what better excuse was needed.
The evening was opened by local group Duke & The Daisy, with a newly expanded line up. Connor Dunk, better known for his part in the duo Capo on 2 and Joe Brown the drummer with rockers The Marras, joined Bash and Charley on the Indie Stage. Whether from hours of practice and playing together, or the addition of two guest members, or most likely a mix of both, they had a deeper more complete sound than I’ve heard before. With a mellow combination of influences ranging from Van Morrison to the Beautiful South, some of it was upbeat while still being chilled out, (if that makes sense), other songs were gentle and melodic with the two vocalists complementing one another as always. Sayonara their latest song is very catchy and definitely “All right” you should check that one out and you’ll see what I mean.
Rachels main support was the versatile Tom Terrell from Canada. Tom was actually the sound engineer the first time Miss Sermanni played at The Café and is a highly acclaimed producer in his home country as well as a member of canadian roots supergroup The Modern Grass. He mixed together folk, blues and country influences. Plucking at his gut-string banjo or dancing across the strings of his guitar, his performance was blues and rootsy, stripped back vintage, with a sentimental heart soaked in whisky and hard times. Highlights for me were Ghost Town his current single and the instrumental he played with Rachel accompanying on the mandolin, it was jaw-droppingly awesome. As they were playing I looked over at Connor (who is a far better guitar player than I am), and he looked as amazed as I did.
Rachel Sermanni’s performance was a beautiful thing. Soft and elegiac, ethereal but earthbound, playful and melancholic. Words and melodies like eddies stirring the mist, tears on a pillow, or the soulful sweet laughter of a friend. I’ve gone a bit poetic there, and its but a poor imitation, but its the most apt way to describe the set. You could see folks being carried away by it, I was too. I really enjoyed Marshmallow Unicorn, a song who’s title quite deliberately has absolutely nothing to do with the song, so don’t let that put you off. I also enjoyed her talk and tales and explanations in between the songs, almost as much as the music, as she connected the real life inspirations to her creations. Rachel’s return was a great success and great experience that I missed out on the first time. Hopefully she’ll come back a third time, hopefully it’ll become a regular thing.
Rachels’ New Album – Tied To The Moon – can be pre-ordered from her website along with her back catalogue – www.rachelsermanni.net
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