'Live@Paper Stone 2013’ by The Idolins “… something erupting in Nottingham”(January 17, 2014)
There’s something erupting in Nottingham … nope not a fracking protest but a band called The Idolins. They’ve stuck a toe in the ‘live recording’ pond and come up with a short three-track EP called ‘Live@Paper Stone 2013’, and to express a personal opinion, it’s rather good.
Apparently, they started out as a duo, Karen Smalley and Claudine West, they then became a trio and gradually acquiring musicians through friendship, persuasion, chance and stealth evolved into a six piece. So now they’re Karen Smalley (song-writer, lead vocals, acoustic guitar, piano) Claudine Barker-West (acoustic & electric guitars, mandolin, banjo, piano, bass, percussion, kit, multi-instrumentation) Nick Scott (vocals, acoustic guitar) Mark Rice (cajon, djembe, percussion, sound engineering) Hannah Barrs (cello, vocals) and Bar Morton (vocals, tambourine).
With only three songs to digest this isn’t the longest review in the world but before I assess the parts I’ll comment on the whole. If you enjoy beguiling, contemporary folk, delivered by ear-catching vocals and finely laced harmonies, across an evocative, melodic musical mix of slithering strings and iridescent percussion then this is it. ‘Live@Paper Stone 2013’ (recorded at Paper Stone studio in Sherwood, Nottingham) won’t exactly break your bank but do offer a respectable investment on the Bandcamp ‘name your price’ page. My favourites - ‘The Dancer’ moody feel, tasty cello and haunting vocals and the faint Eastern tinges that echo through ‘Choices’.
The final analysis? Why haven’t heard this band before? I want to hear more from The Idolins. Find them here: theidolins.com
Reviewer: Tim Carroll