The dark cold weather is beginning to engulf us once again so it’s nice to have something to warm to on these nights. Nalle will take you away to a place far removed from the urban landscape high up in the mountains, to a log cabin in a enchanted forest with stringed instruments and a singer that sounds sometimes Joanna Newsome-esque and sometimes like a bleating goat. Slow, dazed music drones beneath the vocals. Kantele, flutes, viola, clarinet, bouzouki and off-kilter guitar picking to be more precise. It’s an absorbing listen.
Nalle were formed in Glasgow in 2004, a kind of psychedelic avant-folk side project for the members of the band. Their album By Chance Upon Waking was released on Pickled Egg records earlier this year. The album art features illustrations of bears and the song titles refer to birds, mountains, forests and nature so it’s very much music of the hills.
These songs are two of my favourites from the album. “Sunne Song” is the album opener and is a beautiful awakening into the world of Nalle. “Iron’s Oath” is like a cross between mystical Indian music and Planxty (due to Andy Irvine’s pioneering of the bouzouki instrument) and is probably the album’s most accessible song. Sit down with a nice cup of tea and feel bewitched.