Shackleton: Devotional Songs (2×12″, Honest Jon’s Records, July 2016)

Sam Shackleton’s prolific early singles career largely passed me by — I remember quite liking the Ricardo Villalobos remix of Blood On My Hands back in 2007, but that’s about it. In 2012, that all changed with his epic Music For The Quiet Hour, which absolutely blew me away (it still does). His main output since then has been the Deliverance series, which I was kind of meh about. He’s right back on form here, though, with this quartet of hypnotically strange songs. The accompaniment is dominated by his trusty drawbar organ (does that just mean a Hammond, by the way?) and tuned percussion. But it’s Ernesto Tomasini‘s vocals which are truly striking: a mixture of tenor and falsetto, in a slightly sinister cabaret style, it’s a unique thing. And it blends superbly with the music. The lyrics are dark, unhinged, and mystical (and worthy successors to the enigmatic Vengeance Tenfold’s awesome and quietly apocalyptic work on Quiet Hour). Other than Shackleton’s earlier work, I can’t think of any comparisons for this. It’s unsettling, trippy, and utterly spellbinding.

I bought this from Boomkat. They call it Electronic.

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