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Classic Album Review: Whistler | Faith in the Morning

The U.K. trio close the gap between medieval and post-modern on their second LP.

This came out in 2001 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


There would seem to be a pretty gigantic gap between medieval and post-modern. But U.K. trio Whistler manage to reduce it to a hair’s breadth at times on their second CD Faith in the Morning.

Which is not to say that former EMF guitarist Ian Dench, dulcet-toned vocalist Kerry Shaw and expressive violist James Topham spend these 12 tracks jauntily singing of brave woodsmen and maidens fayre. Far from it. These cuts are way closer to Nick Drake or Belle and Sebastian than Mediæval Bæbes. But still, somewhere in the dark, chilly and haunted environs of ambiently folky ballads like Thank You and Faith in the Morning — both of which somehow also manage to bridge the gap between spooky and soothing — there lurk the traces of ancient melodies, arrangements and mannerisms. Then again, maybe I’m just confusing ancient with timeless — two more seemingly contradictory terms that apply equally to Whistler.

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