Velvet & Stone – Debut Album (02.08.19)
“IT’S rare when something as entirely innovative and inspirational as this masterly collection makes an appearance.Velvet & Stone’s sophisticated vision musically inhabits the same the universe as Valparaiso, Giant Sand or Dresden Dolls. Lara Snowdon, who’s composed the songs, has a beguiling polyphonic voice — now a quivering whisper, now potently sonorous, it meanders with bewitching ease from track to track.
Yet it is her symbiotic relationship with Kathryn Tremlett on violin that truly gobsmacks. The latter’s astonishing precision and incisive yet sublime touch recalls Ginette Neveu or Wanda Wilkomirska in the way she phrases or defines rhythm. The orchestrations, full of crescendos and sudden pauses, are in turn powerful and delicate and articulated by a septet of musicians in a masterly ensemble.
Oh Boy, Lay Her Down and Walls simply mesmerise. A rare treat”.
“Dark and haunting folk-noir … The musical dynamics between the core duo of Snowdon and Tremlett are central to the sound of the record. Their vocal harmonies blend seamlessly on ‘Breathe’and ‘Forget About The Rain’ with Tremlett’s violin adding beautiful spine-tingling solos to both. While on the pensive ‘Walls’ Tremlett’s impassioned playing reminds the listener of the work of Fairport Convention’s Ric Sanders and such is her presence on the record it is comparable to the central role Scarlet Rivera played on Bob Dylan’s ‘Desire’ album.
Across nine engrossing songs, the record uses illustrative and articulate lyrics mixed with ethereal and melodic music that takes the listener into the very heart and soul of the characters within the songs”.
“A hugely confident and impressive album”
Oh Boy – single (01.03.19)
“Your new single Oh Boy is stunning – right up my street – 3:04 of sonic bliss!”
– Tom Robinson, BBC Radio 6 Music
“An honest track that starts optimistically cold but soon turns up the heat allowing the female phoenix to rise!” – Klef Notes
“From nowhere, the folk-centred polyphony explodes into your ears!” – Listen to Discover
“One of our most prolific and biggest bands in the area” – Sarah Gosling, BBC Introducing in Devon and Cornwall
“Just beautiful … Come join the folk revolution” – Listen with Monger
The Embers EP – (2017)
“That was lovely … Haunting”
– Clare Balding, BBC Radio 2
“Wow … This is wonderful stuff”
– Frank Hennessy, BBC Radio Wales
“This is a hugely impressive EP but I suspect this is only the tip of an even more impressive iceberg”
“These songs soar … You have a treat on your hands … The EP might just arrive in time to replace the singles worn out from being played too much”
– Adam Jenkins, Fatea Magazine
“This is the BEST that Velvet & Stone have ever done!”
“Velvet & Stone push the boundaries of genre by combining folk themes with catchy pop hooks and great songs, all lead by Lara’s brilliant vocals. I would recommend this record to anyone!”
– Sam Kelly, BBC Radio 2 Folk Award Winner
“Beautifully poetic and charged with sentiment … You won’t be disappointed”
The Storm EP (2016)
“★★★★★ The Storm is a compact debut record at just six tracks. But what a six tracks! … A fantastic debut, more please!”
– Maverick Music Magazine
“★★★★ An Impressive debut”
“Potentially the West Country’s answer to First Aid Kit, currently, the trio largely seem to only play around their own backyard. I suspect their horizons are about to expand dramatically.”
“The EP is beautifully produced, played and sung, lush and evocative and demands repeated playing… This is a storm that’s going to make some serious waves”.
“It’s an EP. You’ve got six songs to let the world know how good you are, so you have to grab the listener right from the start and that’s exactly what Velvet & Stone have done here”.
– Liz Clark, Celtic Connections
“One of our favourite records of the year. Trust me on this one. Velvet & Stone are superb”
– James Santer, BBC Introducing In Devon
“Velvet & Stone tread a compelling line between folk, jazz and blues, and their Storm EP is a haunting listen – great production and writing”
– Gilmore & Roberts, double BBC Radio 2 Folk Award nominees
“When you first listen to ‘The Storm’ from Velvet & Stone you hear softly meandering music reflecting a faintly searching melancholy allied to a gently lyrical expression, there’s other influences too, funk makes itself felt, as do distinctly jazzy and bluesy cuts. The combination of which is undeniably attractive and hauntingly persistent, intriguing and elusive. And you will want to hear more, so much so there’s a certainty most will hit ‘replay’ when it stops”.
-Tim Carroll, FolkWords
“There’s something very uplifting about the serene sound that ensues as things trek tranquilly through enthralling singing and discreet guitars … This is an extremely elegant debut by Velvet & Stone, the tender timbre of which provokes a lot of thought and reflection. It all feels remarkably poignant and poetic, making for an incredibly contemplative and compelling compilation”.
– Dave Simpson, PureMzine
“Effortlessly Graceful Twist on Folk Music”.
“It can frustrate when a disc tries too much and fails, “The Storm” does anything but…It enjoys itself and relishes its wicked arrangement, and most of all, it succeeds. My writing is but a small sample of the quality here. The Storm is a collection of emotions, feelings, and places that reach and touch the soul at numerous points. I don’t want to say any more in case I ruin the experience, I would like to leave a space for the listener to get their hands on the disc and experience the rest first-hand”.