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Andrew Cronshaw: On the Shoulders of the Great Bear
Andrew Cronshaw: Ochre
ˇegar ˇivi: ˇegar ˇivi
CLOUD VALLEY NEWS
The Unbroken Surface of Snow
Cloud Valley CV2009
Available direct here from Cloud Valley - please click one of rather garishly imperative 'buy' buttons below -
and from the usual shops and online sellers
3. The Unbroken Surface of Snow
4. Mhąiri Mhģn Mheall-Shłileach (Gentle Dark-Eyed Mary)
5. Im Hogutz
In the seven years since Andrew Cronshaw's previous album, Ochre, most of his performances have featured a musician who until now hadn't appeared with him on CD - Armenian duduk master Tigran Aleksanyan. Now with The Unbroken Surface of Snow they record together, joined by long-time Cronshaw collaborator Ian Blake on bass clarinet and soprano sax, and the great Finnish singer Sanna Kurki-Suonio, probably best known outside Finland for her membership of Swedish/Finnish band Hedningarna. She sang on Cronshaw's sixth album The Language of Snakes back in 1993, and this time contributes a Finnish epic runo-song to the spacious, minimalist unfolding conversation of the new album's 34-minute title track.
After its release in October 2011 the album spent three months in the top 10 of the World Music Chart Europe.
"Delicate, haunting... glacial"
Robin Denselow, The Guardian
"Stunningly beautiful" - Fiona Talkington, BBC Radio 3
"Absolutely exquisite" - Mary Ann Kennedy, BBC Radio Scotland / BBC Radio 3
"Sublime" - Max Reinhardt, BBC Radio 3
"Music of snowflake-like singularity" - Ken Hunt, fRoots
"A palpable sense of space and peace" - Norman Chalmers, Scotland on Sunday
"Spacious, gracious, subtle, quietly surprising" - Doug Spencer, ABC Australian national radio
"Unfolds, seduces and ultimately mesmerises" - Tony Hillier, The Australian
"The music is sparse, glacial and utterly beautiful, with a wide, panoramic sense of infinite space;
you will happily lose yourself again and again in the title track,
a far northern wilderness transformed into sound"
- Tim Cumming, Songlines
"Ochre was already a masterpiece, but The Unbroken Surface of Snow is a
musical paradise on earth" - Marius Roeting, New Folk Sounds, Netherlands
"Deep, unfolding music... and like snow itself, it falls silently and accumulates
additional weight and resonance with repeated listening" - Lee Blackstone, Rootsworld, USA
"If the BBC ever make a sequel to Frozen Planet, here surely is its emotive soundtrack" - David Quantick, Uncut
"This remarkable, quiet, haunting piece of folk art... The 34-minute title track is a Finnish creation myth set to
a musical landscape that is as close to silence as a heavy snowfall, and more beautiful"
- Tim Cumming, The Independent
"Here is a great beauty that you might not notice immediately; it took me several months.
The music just came flowing towards me, as if I was on a summer meadow, looked up at the sky and saw white clouds drift past.
Or a winter night out in the country with the Milky Way's glittering ribbon of stars.
Such occasions when there is all the time in the world and no boundaries"
- Lennart Wretlind, Swedish national radio P2
here for fuller review quotes
Since the recording of the album, and powerful live shows together in Finland in the summer of 2011,
the four have united as the band SANS, in which Sanna's and Ian's roles are much increased.
SANS made its first appearance outside Finland at a special London showcase on October 23rd - click here to see video from that - and is touring worldwide in 2012 and beyond. See the SANS web pages for info and dates, and SANS on Facebook.
UK buyers (£11 including postage):
Non-UK buyers (£12 including postage):
From March 1st 2013 all the CDs on Cloud Valley - the three most recent by Andrew Cronshaw and the ˇegar ˇivi CD - are available as digital downloads via iTunes and other legal online sources. But we'd much prefer you to buy the physical CDs; that way you get the whole, rather nice, package, the way it was originally designed. The Andrew Cronshaw albums that were made for Topic have also recently been released digitally.
For upcoming and past Andrew Cronshaw performances click here
For much more information about Andrew Cronshaw, including a full discography, biography, photos, video and audio click here, and also go to Andrew's Facebook and MySpace pages
Photos by AC, Jamie Orchard-Lisle & Ian Anderson