This review was originally published by Bright Young Folk here
For those who were captivated and/or terrified by the novels of Alan Garner as a child this six-track EP from Molly Evans should be of particular interest.
Evans is a young, Cheshire-born singer who has been immersed in folk since early childhood. However, for this, her second release, rather than interpretations of traditional songs she has reworked material from the children’s fantasy author, folklorist and fellow Cheshire resident, Alan Garner.
Traditional tales and poems collected by the author, along with extracts from Garner’s novels, have been given a new creative setting. ‘Deep Time and Narrow Space’ magically transports us to a world of faery kings, hobgoblins, mysterious woods and running hares.
Evans has a strong and distinctive voice with lovely flat northern vowel sounds that are a perfect fit for this type of material. She is accompanied by two-thirds of the award-winning folk trio Moore Moss Rutter.
Jack Rutter plays guitar, bouzouki, banjo and duet concertina whilst his colleague, Archie Churchill-Moss, applies his distinctive melodeon-playing. Both talented instrumentalists, they provide wonderfully atmospheric musical accompaniment to Evans’ vocals.
This is an enchanting and fascinating collection of songs but particular highlights include the brooding Maggotty’s Wood, based on one of the stories from Garner’s Collected Folk Tales; and Yallery Brown, about a boggarty creature that Garner describes as “the most powerful of all English fairy-tales.”
With ‘Deep Time and Narrow Space Evans’ has produced something unique and rather special. She deserves heaps of praise both for her singing and her writing as well as the overall creativity of this project.