ALBUM REVIEW: When the hardest part is keeping your standards high

Pennyless are (clockwise from back left) Penny Stevens, Les Woods, Colin Benton and Graham Dale.  Photo by Peter Knight.
Pennyless are (clockwise from back left) Penny Stevens, Les Woods, Colin Benton and Graham Dale. Photo by Peter Knight.

Hanging Moon by Pennyless, Rowdy Farrago Records, Out Now

Bands like Queen, Dire Straits, U2 and Radiohead don’t get where they are by putting out sub-standard albums.

Instead, they build on what has gone before and make the next instalment even better.

Bourne psych-folk band Pennyless have learned that lesson with their fourth album Hanging Moon which had an almost impossible job matching the widely acclaimed previous offering, Tales from the Tulgey Wood.

Pennyless afficionados will be familiar with the traditional folksy Love Fairy and the cultish Hanging Moon from the band’s concerts this year, including Smith’s Cider and Sausage Festival in Bourne on Sunday afternoon at 3pm.

The album is also notable for the introduction of bass guitarist Colin Benton to the band, along with instrumental tracks Blues in the Kitchen and Arthur’s Farewell.

Hanging Moon, the fourth album by Bourne-based psuch-folk band Pennyless.

Hanging Moon, the fourth album by Bourne-based psuch-folk band Pennyless.

There are, however, some tracks that might need several listens to warm to like Arthur Quelling and Motley Crew.

But these are balances by the sounds of Ireland which run right through Big Blisters, Les Woods with his take on Johnny Cash with Travelling Man and the star song on the album, If You Don’t Believe in Magic.

Leonard Cohen himself could have written it which makes Hanging Moon far from a miss on Juke Box Jury.

Review by Winston Brown