Indo-Scots composer (and one-time Soup Dragon) Sushil K Dade has been carving his own niche on the more benign fringes of indie-rock for some years now, using a range of collaborators to bring colour to his songs. On Secrets From The Clockhouse, the guests include former Fire Engines, Go-Betweens, Cans and Sonic Youths, but some of the best pieces feature the young Scots folk singer Karine Polwart, notably a version of the traditional American song "Shenandoah" sung over an improvised backdrop of piano, violin, and gentle percussive noises. Another Scot, the novelist Alasdair Gray, recites the lyric to Dade's "Equations Of Love" in the comically earnest manner of Ivor Cutler, and sundry Sonic Youths and Minutemen chip in vocals to a version of Sun Ra's "Nuclear War", notable for some splendid abstract piano and a scarified guitar break. Ultimately, nothing exemplifies the chilled, blissful tone of the album better than the opening "Nothing Without You", a lovely cyclical snatch of the Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan song "Tery Bina" delivered by Dade's partner Vinita Dade over a subtle blend of dulcimer, banjo and flute.
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