Marie-Claire Berreen & Her Husbands, Come Home. Album Review.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 8.5/10

A woman can never have too many husbands at her side, perhaps if only to do the few jobs she cannot, or at least to give her the right backing, the extra added contribution, when delivering an artful insight into the world. It is in this insight that Marie-Claire Berreen & Her Husbands cherish the responsibility with their brand new album Come Home.

It is a funny, perhaps even worthy of contemplation to know just how much our environment shapes us, guides us and plays with the inner working of the mind to the point where writing music, creating any type of art, can somehow be influenced to so great an effect that what comes across is not just to be taken at first hand view, it requires distance, of objectivity to really be seen for the piece of beauty that it is.

Come Home is that object of desire, of the tempest riding across the skies and persuading a sound to spring forth with absolute intensity of spirit and grounded pleasure. If the storm that inspired them whilst in North Wales was of off the scale indulgence then the humour that resides in the band was enough to send the album into dark wonderful places, filled with Folk imagery and coy abandon.

The relationship between Marie-Claire Berreen and the husbands, Steven Wattison, Peter Jennings-Bates, Dan Slade and Ted Dwyer is one of exclusivity, of potential to go anywhere because the driving force is electric. It is the combination of honour and elemental surprise that casts a huge spotlight on the album and in songs such as the excellent Fury of the Storm, Spark, The Owls Are Not What They Seem and the absorbing and dryly placed Husbands, the music pounds and lifts like a tidal wave crashing over a seemingly uninhabited island, the white filtered crest not caring a single jot if the solitary person on the hill writes down the experience but secretly pleased for the attention.

Some music is there for the taking, it places you in the path of observance and requires nothing but attentive feedback before trudging back with reluctance to the place called home, after all the fireside is never the same once you have seen the desert at night.

Ian D. Hall