Exposé Online banner

Syd Arthur — Moving World
(Dawn Chorus DCRC001, 2011, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 2014-06-24

Moving World Cover artEven though they already had a couple EPs and singles under their belts, Moving World is considered UK psych merchants Syd Arthur’s first proper release. It’s actually a “maxi-EP” type of thing with only five songs, but it’s all you need to know to see where this Canterbury quartet was headed. The band — Liam Magill (guitar, vocals), Raven Bush (mandolin, violin, keys), Joel Magill (bass), and Fred Rother (drums) — create a mix of rock, blues, folk and psych that looks fondly back to the late 60s sound of bands like Jethro Tull but with a modern twist and uniquely personal identity. Phillip Barnes’ flute on “Planet of Love” brings the comparison to Tull a bit too close for comfort, though it’s the only flaw in the collection. Otherwise the vibe is utterly fresh, aided by recordings that sound as if the band is playing live in front of you. There’s also a looseness and spontaneity in the performances that belies the attention to detail and precision required to pull them off. Liam's hippie poetry and free-form melodicism have always been a signature of Syd Arthur’s sound, as proven here. But as an instrumental unit the band have also always enjoyed a telepathic connection that powers the jams, whether backing Raven’s mandolin soloing on “Pulse,” or when driving the Santana-ish tour de force “Hermethio.” Sadly, Moving World is hard to come by these days, but the band still sells it at their shows. Now you have even more reason to catch them live.

Filed under: New releases, 2011 releases

Related artist(s): Syd Arthur

Latest news

2020-01-15
Carlos Alvarado RIP – Carlos Alvarado, pioneering composer, multi-instrumentalist and pioneer of progressive rock and electronic experimental music in Mexico, passed away January 14th, 2020 at age 68 after a two year battle with cancer.  » Read more

2020-01-12
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more

2020-01-12
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more

2020-01-10
Neil Peart RIP – One of rock music's defining drummers has died at the age of 67. Neil Peart's work with Rush provided one of the templates for percussion in rock, and he certainly ranks in the top ten most influential drummers of the 20th Century. Peart retired from playing in 2015 due to health issues, and succumbed to brain cancer on January 7, 2020. » Read more

2020-01-07
Joel Vandroogenbroeck RIP – Word has reached us of the death of Joel Vandroogenbroeck, best known as one of the founders of Brainticket, He also recorded electronic music under a variety of names. He was born August 25th, 1938 in Brussels, Belgium and died December 23, 2019 in Arlesheim, Switzerland, aged 81. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Lucia Micarelli - Music from a Farther Room – So, I've got this record to review. Drop-dead gorgeous raven-haired violin goddess, an obviously classically trained violinist with that Trans-Siberian Orchestra rock twist on your grandparents'...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues