With fiddle and recorders in hand, Laura Cannell explores “the space between ancient, improvised, traditional and experimental music”. Her new record, Quick Sparrows Over the Black Earth, is a haunting collection of improvisations, inspired by 5th-14th century musical fragments and recorded in single takes under the venerable roof of St Andrew’s Church in Raveningham, Norfolk. On “The Drowned Sacristan” Laura has deconstructed her bow, playing the fiddle “overbowed” to draw multiple swaying drones and melodies from the violin at once. These songs are tragic, uplifting and timeless, their poignancy accentuated by the resonances of the church, as if Laura has somehow extracted pre-existing songs and stories from its walls.
Quick Sparrows Over the Black Earth is out on Brawl Records on July 7.