Bo'Weavil Recordings Weavil-46
Excellent new album from this major guitar innovator who straddles classic UK folk complexity with a feel for third and fourth world sonorities and a tactile, exploratory style that makes him more of a spiritual kin than an actual promulgator of the world-gobbling form of the late John Fahey. In his excellent sleeve notes Bruce Russell of The Dead C lists Joynes alongside Guitar Roberts (aka Loren Connors), Sir Richard Bishop of Sun City Girls and Bill Orcutt of Harry Pussy as the only other contemporary guitarists he rates as much as Joynes, especially highlighting the common ground shared with Bishop. It’s true, both guitarists are fairly omnivorous in terms of their magpie proclivities, but Joynes vision of raga guitar owes as much to the drone at the heart of the UK folk revival – Steeleye Span circa Ten Man Mop, Bert Jansch/John Renbourn, Davy Graham – as much as it does to Sumatran – or Congolese – ritual music. As such it feels as profoundly alien as Fahey’s re-wiring of The Blues, presenting a music that is at once immediately recognisable and expressively idiomatic as it is exaggerated, undermined, inflated and otherwise dicked with. Which is to say that Joynes is one of the few original voices to come out of the post-Fahey void and this fantastic record that flashes between revenant re-thinks of traditional material, melancholy slow-mo string pickers and travelling, hallucinatory drone works, is a remarkable testament to the endless evolutionary potential of Guitar Soli. CD edition of 500 copies. Recommended.