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Hatfield And The North - Hatfield and the North CD (album) cover


Hatfield And The North


Canterbury Scene

4.27 | 885 ratings

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4 stars Short Review//

This is a very pleasant and cozy record full of very free flowing and generally pretty, mellow music. The lineup is incredibly stacked, but honestly, just having the name Dave Stewart attached is already enough to sell me on it. There are parts of this record that actually make me laugh out loud. The pure absurdity of having the sound of someone picking up a ringing phone, just to hear Richard Sinclair singing the chorus of the song on the other end always gets me. Robert Wyatt pokes his head in for the memorable and psychedelic "Calyx," but it's the following track where for me, the album really hits a stride: "Son of There's No Place Like Homerton." I love the big celebratory sounding payoffs in this track and the brilliant interplay between the four members, which is a sentiment I can echo for pretty much all the material on this album. These guys are dialed in, and most certainly on the same wavelength. While this track has those big energetic moments, there's a lot of quieter, intimate, female vocal led passages as well that offer a nice contrast within the music. I also really dig the track "Aigrette" being a very upbeat and melodic shorter piece. It reminds me of something you might see on a Camel record around the same time. The North Fol De Rol is very meditative and flowing, giving you some room to breathe before the more chaotic and frantic "Shaving is Boring." The last track i'll highlight is the menacing and evil sounding "Gigantic Land Crabs In Earth Takeover Bid." What a song title! Overall there are some moments during this albums runtime where my attention drifts a little bit during. Mostly in some of the mellower passages. I'd say I prefer the more calculated sound of the follow-up band of sorts: National Health. But there's certainly a time and a place for this memorable release, I love walking through the woods to some Hatfield.

4 stars

dougmcauliffe | 4/5 |


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