Kevin Scott of the Canadian acid-folk band, Mr. Pine, sent their recent album in Lost In Tyme, as a free download.
It's like we have been transfered to England, back in 1971 and amongst the great folk groups of the era, like Mellow Candle, Amazing Blondel, or Steeley Span, we have discovered a lost gem, full of beautiful melodies, in the old traditional style, yet performed with the psychedelic spirit we all love.
Mr. Pine is a band of accomplished musicians, with deep knowledge in the folk scene of the 70s, but this is not sufficient to make a good record. What makes "Rewilding" a recommended album is their high-level songwriting and their honest approach. In fact, I'm sure that most of these songs would fit perfectly in a mixed CD (or tape) with selections of Brit acid-folk of the 70s.
Mr. Pine are Matt McLennan/Kevin Scott/Leslie Oldham/Richard Caners/Jason Peters/Ken Phillips plus several guests (I have to mention the vocals of Alison O'Donnell of Mellow Candle in "Sleep of Ondine")
Here's what Simon Lewis of Ptolemaic Terrascope said about it:
"The second album from Mr Pine is a rewarding collection of songs that take Acid-Folk as a starting point, but is not afraid to tread less travelled paths.
With all songs written by Matt McLennan and Kevin Scott, there is a wonderful flow to the album, each song is enhanced by a full band adding bass, drums, electric guitar, and female vocals, all of which maintain that acid folk tag. After the gently swaying opener "Ace of Cups I”, the band get into the groove with the laid back west-coast feel of "Streets of York”, featuring guest banjo from Jay Churko. Building up the tempo, "Set Piece” is a faster song with a more contemporary sound, that is, until the songs breaks down for a recorder solo, falling through time back to 1972, and doing so with great skill.
Featuring harpsichord and some lovely strings, "Blue Onyx” is a baroque folk delight, yet is obviously the same band as one the previous track, something I find pleasing, a band aware of its own identity and sound. One of the album highlights for me is the pure folk-rock of "Glass Petals”, acoustic picking and rocking electric chords blended perfectly, the top notch vocals, powerful rhythm section and twisted violin adding the tension to a dark tale of murder, as it should be, and a sure fire classic.
Written as an homage to musical heroes Mellow Candle, the songwriters never expected that "Sleep of Ondine” would actually feature vocals from Alison O’Donnell, but so it proved, the song a tribute so well written that it would sit quite happily on "Swaddling Songs” itself. Featuring a small gathering of recorders, the wistful love song "The Enclave”, is so beautiful it will stop you in its tracks, another classic in the making and another reason for you to buy this album now. Having unleashed their muse, the band do not let up for the rest of the disc, the rockier "Cymbeline”, followed by the quieter flow of "Robin’s Breast”, featuring vocals, guitar, violin and tambourine, giving the song a pastoral feel, with some exquisite lyrics adding to the joyous vibe.
At just over six minutes "Dirge” is a heavy guitar drone that slowly envelopes the almost chanted lyrics as the song progresses. This is folk with a totally modern twist and came as something of a surprise, although it fits in with the rest of the album, again proving the bands ability to retain their identity whilst changing their sound. To end this fine offering we get a string-laden instrumental reprise of the opening track, the uplifting playing on "Ace of Cups II” leading us out with a dance in our feet and a smile in our heart, just wonderful."