Having made a name for themselves as innovative protectors of the folk tradition, with three albums of beautifully curated collections of traditional music, The Furrow Collective are back on the road – and headed to Pontio, Bangor this coming Wednesday – with a selection of new takes on old songs. The individuality of the musicians – Alasdair Roberts on guitar, Emily Portman on banjo and concertina, Rachel Newton on harp and fiddle and Lucy Farrell on viola and saw – all of them singers to boot, combine to make a unique and rich sound that can only work thanks to their ability to merge their distinct characters into such a convincing whole.
Winners of the 2017 BBC Folk Award for Best Group, the band formed over a love of English and Scottish folk music which forms the basis of their set. While other acts may go for tricksy arrangements, brash updates or faithful recreations of traditional material, The Furrow Collective somehow steer their interpretations on a different course. There’s an effortless approach to the modernity of their sound that keeps a song fresh, without ever compromising its roots. One for purists and progressives alike.
Pontio, Bangor, Wed 15 Dec. Tickets: £14/£13. Info: here
words JOHN-PAUL DAVIES
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