Sought after singles "Half Turn/Mrs Pilling","Country Cassette" and "The..." />
 

HALF COUSIN

 

The Orkney Islands, off the north-eastern tip of Scotland, had never been known for their distorted junkyard pop. Not until the debut album by Half Cousin,"The Function Room", appeared in 2004, inspired by the islands' weather-beaten landscapes and off-beat characters.

 

Sought after singles "Half Turn/Mrs Pilling","Country Cassette" and "The Diary Fire EP" paved the way for acclaimed shows, supporting the likes of Hot Chip, The Earlies and Boom Bip. Collaborations, also, with Hans-Joachim Roedelius and contributions to the Blank Tape Spillage Fete, all cemented Half Cousin's reputation as something fresh and exciting. Kevin Cormack followed 'The Function Room' in 2007 with 'Iodine' to great critical acclaim, with Uncut magazine saying: "Comparisons with Syd Barrett, early Bjork or Devendra Banhart barely do 'Iodine' justice; a thing of wild and magical beauty"

 

As before, junk percussion, cheap electronics and family heirlooms prevail- but the results are far more beguiling, detailed and, at times, euphoric.

 

The subject matter of small town Orcadian characters is also more elaborate: Irish Country groupies, Rat Pack Dads, crofters on the run from the police and teenage pyromaniacs inhabit songs about chip shop photography, Alzheimer's, social club show business, absentees and mistaken identities. Cormack's twisting melodies lead the way, giving momentum and focus to the driving ragbag collection of customized sounds. Hints of Captain Beefheart, Arab Strap, Animal Collective and even early House music emerge, but always as part of something uniquely it's own. Essentially, it all still adheres to his original aim of creating "short, melodic songs made from junk."