Lost Horizons & Penelope Isles
Wednesday 25th April 2018
The Limelight 2, Belfast
Tickets £15 + fees on sale Fri 12th Jan 10am – buy yours here
Bella Union founder Simon Raymonde and musician Richie Thomas are pleased to announce a headline Belfast show with their new collaboration, Lost Horizons.
Their stunning debut album, Ojalá, released in October last year, is a rare sighting of two gifted musicians who, for different reasons, have been largely absent from music-making for the last 20 years.
Ojalá also incorporates a heady cast of guest singers. Some are signed to Bella Union, such as Marissa Nadler, former Midlake frontman Tim Smith, Cameron Neal (Horse Thief), others are long-time favourites of Raymonde’s (Leila Moss of The Duke Spirit and Ghostpoet), or newer discoveries (Beth Cannon, Ed Riman, Gemma Donleavy and Phil McDonnell). And then there is the incomparable Karen Peris of The Innocence Mission, one of Raymonde’s all-time favourites, in her first collaboration outside of The Innocent Mission and solo recordings.
Before he started Bella Union, Raymonde was the bassist of the revered Cocteau Twins, where the vein of melancholia went very deep. Even before the band had signed to 4AD, the label were releasing records by the instrumental quartet Dif Juz, arguably the first word in post-rock, 15 years before it became a trend: Thomas was their anchor the engine room of their wondrous free-flow. The two bands became friends, and toured together.
“Dif Juz are still one of the best live bands I’ve ever seen, and I adore Richie’s drumming,” says Raymonde. “He plays in a really unusual style, with his hands around the wrong way… He’s got a dub-reggae style, but with a jazz feel. He makes the whole drum kit come alive.”
If Lost Horizons was Thomas’ first recording in 20 years, it was only Raymonde’s second in the same time frame. When Cocteau Twins split in 1997, Raymonde found himself running a record label, and not making music until he joined forces with singer Stephanie Dosen under the name Snowbird, releasing one album, moon, in 2013. “I’d found it so hard to get my own music going,” he admits. “Part of my problem was, what was the point of working with another singer after [Cocteaus’} Elizabeth Fraser? It was foolish to think that, but understandable that I’d compare everyone to her.”
Tickets £15 + fees on sale Friday 12th January at 10am – buy yours here