Lamb - Between Darkness And Wonder

Chances are you wouldn't recognize Lamb (aka Lou Robinson and Andy Barlow) if you passed them in the street, but I guarantee you'll have heard them without realizing it's them. You don't believe me do you? Well let me explain. Their music can be heard on the current Renault campaign, a track was used in Moulin Rouge and they've contributed a song to the soundtrack of Six Feet Under.

"Between Darkness And Wonder" is Lamb's fourth album and was almost entirely recorded in a farmhouse on the outskirts of Bath. It includes the recent single "Wonder" plus ten other tip top tracks. "Darkness" is an unsettling, purposefully uncomfortable listening experience. Lou Robinson's unmistakable voice has similar fragility and vulnerability to Portishead's chanteuse Beth Gibbons. Experimental to the extreme as drum and bass battle it out to the pulsating beats of the electronic epiphany. Less confrontational, more accessible and chart friendly is possible future single "Sugar". It has that quirky Bjorkish vibe and like the Icelandic ice queen a generous helping of eastern influences are provided. Hearing a double bass being played on a dance track puts me in mind of Roni Size and the Reprezent. With a rousing chorus and healthy does of synths, sequencers and melody to die for, this is a jolly, jaunty jamboree. More double bass fun is to be had on "That Thing (Open Up)", which has a lilting sweetness and harmonious ambience. It's a very lively track with drum machines and percussion in abundance. "Clouds Clear" is a confessional, honest and heart wrenching piece of music. The acoustic guitar, drums and harp welcome the vocal, nurturing the delivery especially when singing "storms brew inside, there's no place to hide". The melodramatic chorus is testament to the power Lamb possess. It's layered with a typically appropriate dance sheen.

"Between Darkness And Wonder" can sit proudly next to their classic "Gorecki", the album Lamb began their career with. Lamb have progressed, taken chances and their music is a melting pot of fresh ideas, truth, beauty, innovation and poetic musings on life. Still yearning for deserved commercial success, Lamb have achieved more in four albums than most bands do in a lifetime.

Nicholas Paul Godkin

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