Thursday 18 January 2018

Music: England Keep My Bones by Frank Turner ***

(Extra Mile)

Equally influenced by England's folk tradition and the punk revolution of the 1970s, Frank Turner is a compelling songwriter, still in his 20s, who's likely to finally get his dues with this fourth album.

The title is a giveaway: this is an album fixated on Albion, its people, history, waterways. Turner is a passionate songwriter with an eye for detail, not least on Rivers, an unabashed labour of love to his beloved England, and the charming lead single Peggy Sang the Blues. The latter was inspired by his late grandmother.

Granted, there are several unremarkable tracks here in which the singer sounds like a failed auditionee for Mumford & Sons, but there are surprises too, not least the stark, lovely English Curse, in which Turner sings a capella. There's a rough-and-ready, DIY feel to this album that goes some way towards capturing the singer's esteemed live credentials, much in evidence (I'm told) at Dublin's Academy 2 last weekend.

Burn it: Peggy Sang the Blues; Rivers; English Curse

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