Exposé Online banner

Fern Knight — Castings
(VHF 122, 2010, LP)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2011-06-01

Castings Cover art

Drawing seemingly equal parts from dark-age folk, psychedelic mysticism, and post-rock, this latest release by Fern Knight embraces some of the more straightforward folk sound of their 2008 self-titled release mixed with an abundance of the twisted gothic imagery that pervaded their earlier Music for Witches and Alchemists, along with some new turns and twists. As before, bandleader, singer and songwriter Margaret Ayre (née Wienk) is firmly at the helm of this ship, also contributing cello and acoustic guitar to the band’s sonic palette. A somewhat heavier, often jammy sound is invoked on many of the album’s nine cuts (“Cups and Wands,” “The Eye of the Queen,” and “The Poisoner” are immediate standouts), courtesy of bandmembers Jim Ayre and Jesse Spearhawk, both contributing electric guitars, drums, and percussion, and backing vocals, with the latter also on electric bass and harp. Throughout the proceedings, we have James Wolf on violin, adding color and a brighter melodic counterfoil to the darker, more sombre sounds of the cello. There also seem to be a number of uncredited guests on occasional flute and brass. For prog cred, an exceptional arrangement of King Crimson’s “Epitaph” comes late in the set, with cello, violin, and string harp taking a lead role in the instrumental mix, and Margaret’s voice perfectly elucidating the song’s foreboding lyrics. All taken, this latest release is a major step forward for Fern Knight, recommended for all.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 39, 2010 releases

Related artist(s): Fern Knight

Latest news

2019-10-06
Ginger Baker RIP – Legendary English drummer Ginger Baker has died at the age of 80. After coming to fame with Cream in the 60s alongside Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce, he became one of the most recognized and influential drummers of the rock era. On September 25, his family announced that he was critically ill, and on October 6 his death was confirmed. » Read more

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Rush - Snakes and Arrows – When a short audio sample of "Far Cry" was posted on Rush's web site it led to excited and hopeful premonitions of a return to the kind of prog rock the Canadian trio had pioneered on...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues