And that’s how he announced his 8th and latest studio album and it’s like a fine breeze coming in from the Scottish seaside. The great Scot James Yorkston is a genial, say friendly, cheery kind of guy, he’s been signed with Domino Records for some time now and might be the most filigran and brainy wordsmith in their excellent stable. His music’s soaked in lo-fi folk, no-freak folk, deep-listening-psychedelic folk, chamberpop folk and that might not even be all, folks. It’s accessible art, open and airy, iridescent, heavy but weightless, emotional and mainly musically superb. Hey, it was all recorded in Cellardyke, that notorious Scottish seaside village hidden away in the East Neuk of Fife, ye know, laddies and lassies living south of Hadrian’s wall?
This protégé of John Peel, John Martyn and Bert Jansch had been in our parts before, solo and at one time with his band, The Athletes. Sensitive and fragile was the impression his music made then, he had left his early punk days and influence behind, refined his inscrutable voice and wrapped it around the words the way only a Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy could, wrote Rolling Stone.
Reaching deep into the subconcious it sounds like, James has been threading one gem after another onto that great necklace of songs that is unmistakeably his. Maybe he’s the prophet and the future for this kind of music, both at home down here and maybe even in another galaxy. But right now, right this minute, he’s the guy who simply plays the music for wassailing you.