Track: Goblin Band – The Prickle Holly Bush

Newcomers on the thriving UK folk circuit, Goblin Band are a collection of queer, musicians based around Hobgoblin Music, a folk-instrument shop located in central London. Inspired as much by medieval and early music, as they are by the folk traditions of Britain and abroad, the six-piece set their stall on re-energising timeless, much-journeyed songs for an ever-growing new community of young folk enthusiasts.

Their long-awaited debut release, ‘The Prickle Holly Bush’ comes via Broadside Hacks Recordings (The New Eves, Milkweed, Thyrsis). The track re-versions a 19th century ballad and tells a grim story of one condemned for execution, growing ever more desperate for salvation, as the band themselves explain:

“The Prickle Holly Bush is one of those traditional songs so popular and prolific in versions and names found across the English speaking world. The song’s grim premise is that of a desperate soul about to be hung, for whom salvation arrives not in the form of their family, but in that of their lover. Here, Goblin Band reflects on these timeless themes of estrangement, chosen family, and hope in the face of society’s structures of brutality, through the lens of queer experience in 21st Century England.”

A joyous bellow of vocals and strings over a stomping beat that is as infectious as melodic vocal phrasing and captivating lyrics. The track flows on the band’s gorgeous harmonies but it is their unique sound that really hooks you in and has you intrigued for more. An awesome band to see live I have no doubt.

Check it out, here

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