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Bending The Dark CD


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Music

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Biography

A sonic emporium of traditional English folk, Asian percussion, dubstep, drum and bass and John Barry-esque 70's film soundtracks, 'Bending The Dark' is The Imagined Village's most thrilling, dynamic album to date. Pooling their vast experience and individual musical approaches, this collective - amongst them former members of Afro Celt Sound System, Transglobal Underground ... Read more in Amazon's The Imagined Village Store

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Frequently Bought Together

Bending The Dark + Empire and Love + The Imagined Village
Price For All Three: £27.19

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Product details

  • Audio CD (14 May 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Ecc Records
  • ASIN: B007T12IOO
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 31,643 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
  1. The Captain's Apprentice 1:25£0.99  Buy MP3 
  2. New York Trader 6:22£0.99  Buy MP3 
  3. Winter Singing 4:44£0.99  Buy MP3 
  4. The Guvna 6:09£0.99  Buy MP3 
  5. Sick Old Man 6:29£0.99  Buy MP3 
  6. Nest 4:43£0.99  Buy MP3 
  7. Fisherman 4:05£0.99  Buy MP3 
  8. Get Kalsi 5:41£0.99  Buy MP3 
  9. Washing Song 3:29£0.99  Buy MP3 
10. Bending The Dark12:21£0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Description

Product Description

A sonic emporium of traditional English folk, Asian percussion, dubstep, drum and bass and John Barry-esque 70's film soundtracks, 'Bending The Dark' is The Imagined Village's most thrilling, dynamic album to date. Pooling their vast experience and individual musical approaches, this collective - amongst them former members of Afro Celt Sound System, Transglobal Underground and Red Snapper plus folk luminaries Martin & Eliza Carthy and Jackie Oates - produce a jaw-dropping ride across genres and continents in a way few "conventional" groups can only dream of. The Imagined Village is a folk musical project founded by Simon Emmerson of the Afro Celt Sound System, its intention to produce modern folk music that represents modern multiculturalism in the United Kingdom and as such, features musicians from a wide variety of ethnic and cultural backgrounds. The project started in 2004, and led to the release of an eponymous album in 2007 by a collective of artists on Real World Records. Original contributors included Billy Bragg, Paul Weller, Tunng, Sheila Chandra, Martin and Eliza Carthy. In 2009, the project moved to a new record label, ECC Records, and a second album, 'Empire & Love' was released in January 2010. They toured extensively, appeared on TV's' Later…With Jools' show and won out at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards. Praise for 'Bending The Dark' Independent on Sunday **** The Times **** Mojo **** R2 **** "It's a daring mix of tradition and modernity but the group's skill and organic approach pull it off." – The Observer "At their best – they are glorious." – Songlines "A slow-burn success" – Uncut

BBC Review

For all that pop music is becoming increasingly niche (or increasingly tribal, depending on your point of view), there are still those trying to shoehorn various unlikely genres together, not least The Imagined Village collective, brainchild of Simon Emmerson, leader of Afro Celt Sound System.

For almost a decade now, they have attempted to fuse traditional finger-in-your-ear folk with all sorts of non-trad, but mostly "world", genres. Not entirely surprisingly, the hacksaw approach to a problem that requires fine-tuning has meant the results were mixed at best.

This third album has notably less input from folk titan Martin Carthy (there is more from his singing, fiddling daughter Eliza), but it's a huge, focused, and daring leap forwards. Although Washing Song is too short of ideas on an album otherwise overflowing with them, the rest of the more overtly folk material, especially Wintersinging, has a new-found spring in its step and the oddly sensual Sick Old Man even gets away with banging on about “raggle taggle gypsies”, albeit from a sympathetic 21st-century perspective.

Yet, when The Imagined Village venture from the folk cocoon, they can stumble. Get Kalsi, a kind of Bhangra take on the Get Carter theme and a tribute to their percussionist Johnny Kalsi, falls between too many stools. But The Guvna hurls warped loops, space-age dub, twangy sitar and keyboards into the mix and somehow emerges as a coherent force of nature.

The real standout though, is the near-instrumental title-track, all 12 minutes of it. It serves as a guided tour of The Imagined Village, beginning with chanted Asian vocals, hurtling through two-way drum battles, a gloriously uplifting central melody and myriad delicious tangents. Musical boundaries are not so much blurred as scrubbed out, and it's exactly what they've been trying to say for their whole existence.

For all the many delights of Bending the Dark, it's hard to see where The Imagined Village can go from here. They're not in the market for hits as such and, as Emmerson's Afro Celt Sound System discovered, a substantial live following may not translate into substantial record sales. Still, as calling cards go, Bending the Dark states their case most eloquently.

--John Aizlewood

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By The Professor on 29 Aug. 2012
Format: Audio CD
I loved the first IV album, thought their second release Empire & Love was even better and now they have managed to top that with Bending The Dark! Empire & Love was much more of a 'band' album that the first release and Bending The Dark takes that vibe further still.

In terms of personnel, this album does not include Chris Wood (who was busy working on his own album) but sees the wonderful Jackie Oates joining as a full member. It's Jackie who opens the album with an acapella The Captain's Apprentice before the band kick in on New York Trader.

Eliza Carthy fans are in for a treat on tracks such as Fisherman, Sick Old Man and the stunningly beautiful Washing Song.

The two instrumental tracks The Guvna & Get Kalsi (the latter being a theme tune for percussionist Johnny Kalsi) both have incredible strong grooves running through them; your can't help but tap your feet ; )

The title track is a 12 minute epic composed by Sheema Mukherjee for the 2012 Cultural Olympiad and is a wonderful melting pot of styles ranging from Morris to Bhangra and pretty much everything in between.

If I had to make a criticism it would be the lack of a Martin Carthy lead vocal anywhere on the album; whilst he contributes some beautiful guitar work and backing vocals, I would have loved to hear his voice to the fore on a track or two.

I watched the promo video for this release and as a member of the band says "No one else could make this album" and he's spot on ... IV really are unique. If only all the people who rave over artists such as Bellowhead & Mumford & Sons gave The Imagined Village a listen they would love this album.

I seriously can't understand the Amazon reviewer that stated "Time to call it a day on this project I think" ... you can't be listening to the same album! This collective just goes from strength to strength.

Roll On Album No.4!!!!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By T.Phillips on 16 May 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I can really say no more. I discovered the Imagined Village first album completely by chance. This is, I guess, what they call that "difficult third album", and it is, in my opinion, just brilliant. It goes way beyond the sort of "fusion" stuff you might expect by looking at the cast of characters, and manages a hat-tip to several different genres, starting from, and always returning to, solid traditional folk values. They've just been updated to 2012, that's all. I can't help thinking that track 3 (Winter Singing) sounds like a modern take on the original Pentangle stuff, and I keep expecting the following track (The Guvna) to burst into something from the Specials or Madness. The final track (the title track to the album) is a wild 12 minutes 22 seconds of all sorts of snatches and homages.

Well done all concerned. My personal choice for Album of the Year already.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Angela B on 15 May 2012
Format: Audio CD
I walked into a record store today and heard this playing and loved it so bought it having never heard of The Imagined Village. I have listened to it twice through already and do not regret my impulse buy at all.
I love the mix of folk/world/techno music and will definitely be seeking out their live gigs.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By K. Box on 20 Nov. 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I won't go track by track, but make a couple of general comments. If you liked Afro Celt Sound System you'll like some of this, 'cos that's what a couple of trax sound like.If you like traditional folk music brought up to speed and "noughtied" you'll like this. If you like a mixture of both with a bit extra,you'll like this.If you hate folk music,you'll probably actually like this. If you're like me, you'll like this.I like it.It's better than their first two albums. And I like those. Are you sensing a pattern here?
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Pete Fyfe on 7 Jun. 2012
Format: Audio CD
Unfortunately, due to extensive notes already provided from the press release by the band themselves it should leave hard working (and unpaid) enthusiasts like me little or nothing to say about this latest release from The Imagined Village. I will say this though, I, along with most of my friends are eagerly awaiting the movie "The Avengers Assemble" (it's a bloke thing ladies!) so, when "Bending The Dark" arrived on my doorstep I thought hello, this is the `folk music' equivalent of that band of brothers. Mind you, I'm not sure I can visualise Chris Wood, Martin Carthy or Simon Emmerson in spandex this `folk' super-group certainly know how to flex their creative musical muscles. Gone is the Carthy songbook on which many of the previous recordings were based to be supplemented with (predominantly) contemporary songs from members of the band themselves and from the opening instrumental "The Guvna" it would appear the band have thrown everything into the mix including electronics galore (a nodding wink to the BBC Radiophonic Workshop), a variety of ethnic instrumentation from all corners of the planet and I wouldn't be surprised if they also added the kitchen sink for good measure. Of course in lesser mortal's hands this could be a cumbersome beast but under the deft guidance of Mr Emmerson it proves a thing of beauty. Currently the `folk' band sound augmented by `brass' (Bellowhead and the Unthanks etc) seems very popular with audiences everywhere and with this in mind the use of the Kick Horns on the Gothic "New York Trader" provides the listener with a real sense of `shiver me timbers' whilst clever application of unusual time signatures engaged throughout the recording really do throw you this way and that particularly on Sheema Mukherjee's title track where the use of the variant of "The Cuckoo's Nest" is surprisingly effective. For insomniacs everywhere (and I mean that with the most positive of intentions) I'd suggest you purchase a copy of this CD.

PETE FYFE
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