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Woven Hand

Prog Folk

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Woven Hand The Threshingfloor album cover
3.19 | 18 ratings | 3 reviews | 28% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2010

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Sinking Hands (3:23)
2. The Threshingfloor (3:07)
3. A Holy Measure (4:19)
4. Raise Her Hands (3:54)
5. His Rest (3:16)
6. Singing Grass (3:55)
7. Behind Your Breath (4:51)
8. Truth (4:54)
9. Terre Haute (4:00)
10. Orchard Gate (5:39)
11. Wheat Straw (0:52)
12. Denver City (3:35)

Total time: 44:45

Line-up / Musicians

- David E. Edwards / words & music
- Ordy Garrison / drums, percussion
- Pascal Humbert / guitar

- Peter Eri / Hungarian shepherd's flute (9)

Releases information

CD Sounds Familyre 036 (2010) US

Thanks to ClemofNazareth for the addition
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WOVEN HAND The Threshingfloor ratings distribution

(18 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(28%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(22%)
Good, but non-essential (50%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

WOVEN HAND The Threshingfloor reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by ClemofNazareth
3 stars David Edwards continues to evolve his music with Wovenhand, his chosen artistic vehicle for the past eight years or so since 16 Horsepower took what is starting to look like a rather permanent hiatus. The latest offering 'The Threshingfloor' both reinforces Edwards' gruff and gritty form of folksy spiritual music and also expands on it with slightly greater lyrical depth and musical variety. The result is another winner well worth the effort it takes to get into most of Wovenhand's music, but maybe not quite as special as 2008's 'Ten Stones' or the raw and seductive 'Consider the Birds'.

If you stop with the first track you'll go away with the impression Wovenhand have simply picked up where they left off with 2008's excellent 'Ten Stones'. That would probably be good enough even if they did, but it doesn't take the trio long to branch out with the title track, a driving Pentacostal-sounding thing that features uncredited instruments which most likely include Edwards' banjola and what sounds an awful lot like a set of bagpipes. I'm pretty sure Edwards is even speaking in tongues or at least some obscure language midway through. Pretty intense and even more so as I'm playing it right now in the middle of a blistering summer evening thunderstorm.

Things lighten up just a bit with "A Holy Measure" which is musically a bit like "The Good Hand" from the band's 2002 debut album and with what sounds like a metaphysical 'Garden of Gethsemane' theme.

As I listen to this album I have to admit to being a bit annoyed with the complete lack of liner notes that accompany the digipack I preordered. I'm left wondering if there is an expanded version or limited edition coming in the near future that might at least detail out all the players and instrumentation (is that a piano at the end of "A Holy Measure" for example), also uncredited but probably played by either Edwards or perhaps Daniel McMahon who appeared on several prior Wovenhand albums but whose name doesn't appear anywhere in the credits for this one?

Edwards seems to have abandoned any pretense of secular sensibilities with this record. There are few commercial tunes or covers like "Ain't No Sunshine" from Wovenhand's debut, or "Bad Moon Rising" or Joy Division's "Day of the Lords" from his 16 Horsepower days. Almost everything here is Christ-centered and serious, nowhere more evidently than on the slow and mostly acoustic dirge "Singing Grass" (now come on ? I swear that's a cello in the background playing tricks with my ears). I love this guy's music but really this is the one drawback to the album. On pretty much everything he's done prior the mood lightens up and shifts focus to music-over-Maranatha at least once or twice. This definitely is not the sort of CD you'll throw into your car's player for a warm summer evening hanging out with friends. This is stuff meant more for personal reflection and introspection, and even then in limited doses.

The one deviation is an obscure cover of New Order's "Truth", but even here there seem to be veiled references to Edwards' religious obsessions ("Will my time pass so slowly On the day that I fear?")

The album closes with an odd countrified ditty complete with digitally-dated vocals that are maddeningly familiar but which I can't place even after spinning this thing several times. Once again I'm left lamenting the lack of liner notes for the album despite the gorgeous cover and CD art courtesy of Jay Vollmar who's also done great art for Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, Tortoise, Slim Cessna, Mastodon and the Shins among others.

I've been looking forward to this record for some time, and for the most part David Eugene Edwards does not disappoint. Musically these songs are much more polished than most of what was on his 'Mosaic' and 'Consider the Birds' releases, and the rich instrumentation is definitely a welcome improvement over some rather sparse music he had become known for over the past several years. In the end though he doesn't quite make a substantial leap beyond 'Ten Stones' lyrically or with the general mood of the music, something I think he needs to do at least a little to continue progressing as well as probably for his overall mental health. I'm going with a very high three stars for this one, but reserve the right to revisit that if 'The Threshingfloor' clicks with me some time in the future.


Review by Sean Trane
3 stars 3.5 stars really!!!

After a somewhat deceiving Ten Stones album, I expected DEE to rebound with a more stunning comeback in the more-medieval style of Mosaic, but unfortunately, it isn't so, despite an outstanding but all-too promising artwork. No that Threshingfloor (whatever that means) is a bad album at all, I actually prefer it to Ten Stones and it certainly doesn't differ much from the typical Woven Hand sound, thus making that fantastic Mosaic album a sort of UFO in the project's discography. Indeed DEE gives us another batch of that electric folk rock mixed with some that alternative rock that still pervades from his 16 Horsepower days. Remaining in the group is the ever-present Ordy Garrison on drums; but the bass is held by newcomer Pascal Humbert, who actually co-writes one track, Singing Grass, on which he plays a bowed contrabass, which is certainly one of the album's highlights.

Definitely stranger, but nothing shocking, is a cover of New Order's Truth track, where Garrison uses a more mechanical style of drumming, in order to catch that early 80's feel without sounding like the original crappy stuff. Elsewhere there is a small folky flute in the Terre Haute track that brings a fresh little extra on top of the business-as-usual WH sound. The slower- paced Orchard Gate is another good point, After the short Floyd-like interlude of Wheatstraw, the album closes weakly on the album-low Denver City, a sort of 60's parody or pastiche. Overall, another decent album of a band that can't seem to regain its moment of progressive brilliance it had reached with mosaic, but by all means Threshing floor is anything but a bad album, but it does get a bit lost in the shuffle of the WH/16HP deckof tarot cards.

Review by TCat
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars David Eugene Edwards is the artist behind the formation of Woven Hand, but before this band, he was also the person that created the band "16 Horsepower", an alt-country band that utilized some of the same styles as he uses with Woven Hand. The big difference here is that Woven Hand has more of the folk element intermingled with dark, minor chord, almost gothic gospel music.

"The Threshingfloor" is the bands 7th album, released in 2010. The album really continues with that heavy, almost apocalyptic sound that still spouts out spiritual lyrics but done in a fire and brimstone style as before. The project used sparse instrumentation when they first started out, but has expanded to a full band as they are in this album.

Though the music is very root-sy, it is surprisingly dark for spiritual music. But that actually lends itself to the earlier folk style anyway. This album is full of that style, but it also takes from some traditional dance styles, and in this album, those are the best tracks as some of the usual ones are starting to feel a bit stale when you first hear them. As they grow on you, you get a better appreciation for them, but that doesn't change the fact that the overall feel of each album doesn't change much.

The better tracks here are the ones that sound least like songs from previous albums like "The Threshingfloor", "Singing Grass", the "New Order" cover "Truth", "Orchard Gate" and "Denver City". All of the other tracks are still okay tracks, they are just pretty much material that we have already heard from them.

As much as I love 16 Horsepower, I have a harder time having as much enthusiasm for Woven Hand. They are great for a listen once in a while, but, as I said, tend to sound to much the same. This is a pretty good album if you want to try out the sound of the band, and you will probably love it the first time you hear it, but if you've heard the band before, then you have pretty much heard what is offered on this album.

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