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Clayhill - Small Circle

  by Anthony Strutt

published: 17 / 10 / 2004



Clayhill - Small Circle
Label: Eat Sleep
Format: CD

intro

Excellent and eclectic first full-length album from Clayhill, which includes former Sunhouse singer Gavin Cklark, and Ted Barnes and Ali Friend, both of whom have worked with Beth Orton


'Small Circle' is Clayhill's first full album and follows on from their mini album debut 'Cuban Green' back in February of this year, Both albums were recorded at the same time, but 'Small Circle' has a much bigger sound. The record opens up with 'Alpha Male' which combines haunting guitar from Ted Barnes with some sensitive harpischord playing. Gavin's vocal is avant garde in tone and edges towards sounding like Mark Mulcahy, but with much more of a jazzy tone. 'Northern Soul' was released as a 7 inch, and is the title track from a short film made by Gavins old friend, up-and-coming director Shane Meadows. The vocal here is clearer, and the music has a funky groove. Ted is Beth Orton's former guitarist and his playing sounds like something he might he have done with her.Imagine a chill out guitar tune with a forward thinking drive to it. This could be massive if enough people heard it. It is a little like Radiohead, but much stronger. 'Moon I Hide' is very laid back and wonderful. 'Human Track' is very Bjork' like and has up front vocals. 'Even Though' is an acoustic stripped down number and 'Rushes of Blonde' has some perky guitarwork and has some lovely trumpets and strings at the end. 'Mystery Train' is jazzy and has some deep double bass from Clayhill's third member, Ali Friend. A more fuller version of 'Grasscutter' from 'Cuban Green', which has a full orchestral sound, follows. 'Afterlight' is downbeat and sad sounding. This excellent and eclectic CD concludes with 'End Refrain' which is very jazzy and which uses a choir.



Track Listing:-
1 Alpha Male
2 Northern Soul
3 Moon I Hide
4 Human Trace
5 Even Though
6 Rushes Of Blonde
7 Mystery Train
8 Grasscutter
9 Afterlight
10 End Refrain



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interviews


Interview (2004)
Clayhill - Interview
Clayhill are back with their second album of the year, 'Small Circle', three songs of which have been used on a short film. "Nothern Soul' by cult director Shane Meadows. They talk to Anthony Strutt about the making of the film


digital downloads




reviews


One Nerve (2006)
Impressive new download only single from Clayhill, the current project of former Sunhouse singer Gavin Clark, and guitarist Ted Barnes and double bassist Ali Friend , both of whom used to play with Beth Orton.
Mine At Last (2006)
Acoustic (2005)
Cuban Green (2004)


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