Smoke Fairies – Through Low Light and Trees

January 01, 1970

(Year Seven Records)


Given their low-lit, solitary stance, the Smoke Fairies are
quickly laying claim to being Britain’s new folk darlings, and indeed, that
pronouncement isn’t be misplaced. With their regal harmonies, steady strum and
shimmering choral melodies, they readily bring to mind Pentangle, Steeleye
Span, Sandy Denny, June Tabor and other trad acts known for their graceful poise
and elegiac sentiment. The swirling embrace of “Summer Fades,” the forlorn feel
of “Feeling Is Turning Blue” and the delicate precision of “Blue Skies Fall”
suggest the Smoke Fairies aren’t about to stray from that tender muse any time
soon, and so too, the fact that words like “summer,” “storm,” “rain” and
“morning” populate the song titles gives more than a hint of their fondness for
an ethereal gaze.


Indeed, this descriptively dubbed debut (originally released
in the UK last September, it’s technically, their second album, although the earlier
and not totally unavailable Strange The
seems to have attained urban legend status among fans) makes an
ideal soundtrack whilst sitting in front of the hearth, pining away and staring
dreamily at autumnal fields. There’s more than a hint of wistful romance in
these precious ballads, especially evident in the sparse, solitary perspective
gleaned from “Strange Moon Rising,” “Erie Lackawanna” and “After the
Rain.”  Yet, if the Smoke Fairies seem
obsessed with fostering a melancholy mood, it’s fortunate that their evocative
sound manages to remain so consistently enchanting.



Skies Fall,” “Summer Fades” LEE ZIMMERMAN

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