Few albums are quite so urgently anticipated as the second record from the mesmeric Snakefarm. After ten years, they are back and My Halo At Half-Light reconfirms all the promise of their Songs From My Funeral debut.
As a solo artist, Anna Domino released four remarkable albums and two EP’s for the Belgian label Les Disques du Crepuscule, between 1984 and 1990. Those recordings are often cited as major influences on the British trip-hop movement centred around Massive Attack and Portishead. Yet, the glorious New York summer afternoon that SNAKEFARM crept into her consciousness, Domino knew she’d found a whole new musical window to leap through – “I was waiting for the light”, and said “We should take a bunch of those great old songs about murder and such, and start doing them with modern arrangements.” The idea refused to sit still, and as soon as she returned home, Domino and Delory set to work on the experiment. “Just to see what would happen.” Though subtle percussion and loops had distinguished her earlier recording, in Snakefarm Anna wanted the beats to be more prominent, yielding percolating arrangements that could carry the narrative content of the words. It worked. “It was so much fun,” confesses the singer, “the arrangements almost wrote themselves. What surprised me was how it didn’t take any forcing at all.”
In another century, Anna Domino and Michel Delory working under the sobriquet SNAKEFARM, released their remarkable debut Songs From My Funeral. We’re very proud to report that the sublime follow-up My Halo At Half-Light will emerge via Fledg’ling on Monday September 26th. FLED 3086
My Halo At Half-Light continues where the previous album left off and features gorgeous, scintillating arrangements of ten classics from the American folk song tradition that bring these stories from our collective past into the sunlight of today. “Domino’s stunning vocals are the high point of this unexpected gem, a voice that is at once smoky and crisp, somber and wickedly stormy, perfectly matched to the task of bringing new and disturbing life to such overworked material.”
“In 1999, Snakefarm made the legendary album Songs From My Funeral that seemed like the future of folk music, and then they vanished off the planet. But hurrah: a new one is due in the Autumn.” Ian Anderson in the latest fRoots.
“My Halo At Half-Light truly does pick up where its predecessor left off, looking back at the catalogue of American folk song and bringing it into new modern relevance in a way that others looking to update traditions could well learn from… Let the album seep into your soul and it’s a stunning piece of work.” Chris Nickson, fRoots
“Everything here sounds ‘right’. It’s not a matter of loving either The Stanley Brothers or Massive Attack: with Snakefarm you can have both and a third musical possibility, too. Outstanding!” John Crosby, R2
Anna Domino : vocals, keyboards, acoustic and electric guitars, harmonica, knives, finger snaps
Michel Delory : acoustic, dobro and electric guitars, mandolin, banjo, bass, synth and drum programmes, percussion
Hearn Gadbois : hand percussion
Al Pahanish : drums
Sebastian Steinberg : electric bass, upright bass