Published on March 1st, 2015 | by Mike Ainscoe0
INDIA ELECTRIC CO. – ‘The Girl I Left Behind’
A dynamic debut from the young (although ‘debonair’ would be more alliterative) Devon duo who are tapping into the mainstream with a support slot for Midge Ure’s ‘Breath Again’ tour – says something for the esteem in which they are held. Kind words and testimonials have come from ‘Show Of Hands’’ Steve Knightley and BBC 6’s Tom Robinson (“folk teleported into the future”)
A year in the writing in various locations on both sides of the English Channel and housed in an intriguing cover showing a footbridge disappearing into a hazy distance, in India naturally, and setting up that expectation of walking into the unknown, it combines a fusion of styles and influences to produce a suitably eclectic collection. It explores the theme of transience, the sense of non belonging and the highs and lows of being on the fringes of society.
In terms of the music there’s a wide and varied palette of styles and influences which make their way into the arrangement. ‘Beirut’ and ‘Heimat’ both have a lazy tango feel. A gypsy jazz style track finds its way into ‘The Thought-Fox’ with a smattering of words borrowed from the work of Ted Hughes. At a much more rustic and simple level you could just as well imagine the plaintive ambience of ‘I Can’t Make You Love Me’ in the hands of any number of singer songwriters, all longing and stripped back lyrics telling of missed opportunities.
The stand out track and undoubted highlight is ‘My Friends Are Rich’ – although the catchy chorus references the album title. It’s an arrangement which is based on an 18th Century folk tune and given a thorough polishing and sprightly accompaniment. In terms of the dreaded ‘commercial’ appeal and sheer catchiness, it stands head and shoulders as the lead track, which is the one which pulls you into listening to the full album. Similarly upbeat is ‘Eyes And Ears’, which revisits Andrew Marvell’s 17th Century poem alongside it’s lively banjo and accordion driven arrangement.
At just over half an hour of music it’s over all too quickly, and to be frank, a little short, frustratingly rather than thankfully. To paraphrase Basil Fawlty, too much of a good thing always leaves one wanting less. This is an acoustic duo with an electric name and an album filled with all the diversions which come between.
Follow the link to hear and see the guys talking about the record.
By Mike Ainscoe