JB Nelson is quite known in the americana gothic/death country/dark folk circles, so I‘m not gonna waste your time with his introduction (though I am planning to talk to the man in not so a distant future), but today we’re gonna have a look at this little release of his.
Clocking in only 15:10 (and that’s not all songs, as here we are presented with intro and outro as well), JB brings us to the world of creepy Scottish folk songs in this special Halloween EP, released, well, on Halloween night, October 31st, 2013.
And right after the “Raving Mad” intro (taken from “The Wicker Man” movie) we’re sucked in to “Devil’s Bagpipes”, which is a nice accoustic country tune. I really like JB’s performance – it’s spot on and if you like music in any form, you will have no objection of spending time listening to this. That harmonica tune is quite haunting and that’s what we like, right? Also his take on Scottish accent is quite commendable, it’s not easy, folks, it’s definitely not easy!
“Red Cap”, the second track, is even creepier. Man, imagine listening to this in some roadhouse tavern or by the camp fire, I would shit bricks with every strange noise from outside! I’d say it is like an ancient urban legend storytelling. Creepy as hell!
The third song, designed only by “//” is the shortest track here, with only 1:42 of playing time, but it’s full of sadness and melancholy, the harmonica and the overall arrangement brings to mind some weird circus funeral..yeah, total Halloween vibe.
And with “The Kelpie”, for a change the longest tune, is on par with the “Devil’s Bagpipes” and JB is helped by a female vocalist, and they worked in a perfect harmony, although the track is far from your standard country, some notes being hit here sound out of place, but they really not. That’s the beauty of this genre, as evidenced also in the next song.
Yes, this is “Peg Leg Jack”, which on the surface may appear as a children rhyme song, but the music gives it a coat of chill and kill. Happy times these ain’t, apparently, but it’s funny, considering how many folk songs actually deal with quite gruesome things of life.
The last – real – song of this EP is “The Witches Song”, and as in “The Kelpie” here we again enjoy the nice haunting vocals of JB and his female counterpart.
And the outro…”You Did It Beautifully”, again, from “The Wicker Man”.
I have to say this is not the first time encounter with JB Nelson and his music, but that was quite long time ago and I will admit I’ve forgotten how nicely his performance is. Remember that, because it’s worth it.
Yes, JB, you did it beautifully indeed.