Though their latest top 20 album, Bonxie, was their most electronic release to date Stornoway are best known (and possibly best loved) for their compelling acoustic performances. Magic is conjured by their use of traditional instrumentation, the Steadman brothers’ sibling harmonies; making up the four parts with Jon Ouin and the clear, true, spell of lead singer Brian Briggs’ voice.
The band’s love for wildlife, the outdoors and of course Brian’s PhD in Ornithology are at the forefront of their message, underlined by their recent tour of RSPB nature reserves: The Shags and Ducks and Rock ‘n’ Roll Tour. Combined with Stornoway’s passion for playing unplugged shows, it seems completely natural, in every sense of the word, for them to produce a study of Bonxie that takes the listener back to its evolutionary beginnings.
The Unplucked EP presents acoustic versions of five songs from Bonxie: Between the Salt Marsh and the Sea, Get Low, Man On Wire, The Road You Didn’t Take, Lost Youth and a cover of Yazz’s 1988 hit The Only Way Is Up (click title to watch lyric video). The songs are stripped of their plumage and their unadorned, skeletal simplicity is revealed.
As the band extolled on one of their first ever releases The Battery Human, we need to unplug and “Fix our loose connection out in the natural world wide web”. So tune in, turn on and drop out with Unplucked by Stornoway
UK Festival Dates
1st Aug – Cambridge Folk Festival
2nd Aug – Port Eliot Festival, St. Germans
7th Aug – Belladrum Festival, Inverness
29th Aug – Towersey Festival, Thame
30th Aug – Purbeck Valley Folk Festival, Wareham
6th Sept – Festival Number 6, Portmeirion