Album: Esben & the Witch, Violet Cries (Matador)

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The Independent Culture

Judging by the titles on their debut album – "Argyria", "Chorea" and "Eumenides" – Brighton trio Esben and the Witch are a band who paid attention in Classics.

Throughout the exquisitely mournful Violet Cries, Rachel Davies issues Cassandra-like predictions of woe and mayhem, while Thomas Fisher's filigree guitars shimmer like sunset on a lake. It's small-g "gothic", reminiscent of Dead Can Dance: Matador won't thank me for saying it's a record whose spiritual home is 4AD.