Ed Dowie – The Uncle Sold
Back at the dawn of the millennium, Portsmouth's Brothers in Sound looked destined for biggish things. Label mates of The Beta Band, the trio's subtle rhythms, gentle beats and loops won them fans among those who appreciated their modish blend of psychedelia.
Fast forward almost two decades since their debut single and former member Ed Dowie is leading a pleasingly odd existence as a composer for various theatre, short film and art projects as well as making the kind of hauntingly autumnal folk music which permeates this, his debut album.
Despite the pastoral feel of proceedings, the theme is actually that of the city with The Uncle Sold taking its title from the 1995 Kazuo Ishiguro novel The Unconsoled (geddit?), a book that takes the reader on a continually evolving, dream-like journey around a non-specified city.
Dowie's voice is the real winner here, recalling the plaintive deadpan tones of Robert Wyatt, as the delicate haze of instrumentation and choral tones rises and swells like the hopes and dreams of the urbanites whose lives are depicted here. A gently beautiful collection of stolen snapshots of glimpsed futures and lost pasts.
Listen to: Yungpawel, Verbarhemiopia