Album: James Yorkston, I Was A Cat From a Book (Domino)

 

For his latest album, James Yorkston augments his usual band with members of Lamb and the Cinematic Orchestra.

The resulting extended instrumental palette has brought a new depth to the arrangements but has added little transparency to Yorkston's often bewildering lyrics.

On "Border Song", the result sounds like a blurted stream of consciousness over bustling drums, piano and fiddle; clarinet and piano lend a relaxed air to the old-timey duet "Just As Scared"; and the baffling insect observations of "Spanish Ants" ride gently chugging harmonium, guitar and accordion. Most intriguing of all is "Sometimes the Act of Giving Love", where, over wistful violin and piano, Yorkston muses bitterly on wasted emotions.

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