You Are Wolf – Keld

Album Review | Firecrest Records | Review by Allan Wilkinson | Stars: 3/5

You Are Wolf, is a collaboration between singer Kerry Andrew, multi-instrumentalist Sam Hall and percussionist Peter Ashwell and Keld is the title of their new album release. The album is chock full of folk songs, some you may have heard before, some you may not. I would at first venture to describe the opening song as unaccompanied, but nay, ‘tis accompanied by a variety of clicking, tapping and clapping, with a brook babbling along in the background. The Baffled Knight neatly introduces Kerry’s voice to us (new to me at any rate), whilst also taking us back to nature, a reflection of the album’s title “Keld”, which is an old word for ‘the deep, still, smooth part of a river”. The album’s theme is indeed freshwater, illustrated by the cover shot of an almost submerged Kerry, surrounded by a ripple. I’m assuming much of this album was considered whilst swimming in the wild, one of her other passions, and some of it is very much reflected in the material here. I often wonder how I would feel if I was hearing some of these familiar folk songs for the very first time. I would probably be just as astonished with some of the melodies as I initially was, yet the songs being revisited and re-shaped by today’s young folk singers impress me by the virtuosity of their voices and of the highly inventive arrangements. Oh she just sounds just like Lisa Knapp thought I when I arrived at “The Weeper”, but then realised it was in fact Lisa Knapp guesting. Kerry has that sort of ‘otherworldliness’ we find in such singers as Lisa Knapp, Emily Portman and Bjork even. Folk songs are often obsessed with drowning and there’s plenty here to submerge oneself in, not just the investigation of ordinary human beings and their relationship with water, but also the spirits and myths, the mystical and magical, the ethereal and the supernatural.