Coinciding with the Piano Day celebrations, Penguin Cafe released last month a gorgeous new single called ‘Second Variety’. There’s more wonderful news from the ensemble of Arthur Jeffes who have this week announced the release of their fifth record, following their 2019 Antarctic-inspired album, Handfuls Of Night. Entitled Rain Before Seven…, the album takes its name from an old and optimistic weather saying, ‘Rain before seven, fine before eleven’. Jeffes comments:
“It has faintly optimistic overtones and I quite like it. It’s fallen out of usage recently but it does describe English weather patterns coming in off the Atlantic.”
Rain Before Seven… is infused with exuberant and colourful moods, as Jeffes explains:
“Stylistically it’s really satisfying to get back to playful rhythms and instruments. Certainly when starting out, I became aware that we’d stopped using quite a few of the textures that had been there at the beginning—and it was certainly there in my dad’s earlier stuff. So there’s a lot of balafon and textures from completely different parts of the world, musically and geographically: ukuleles, cuatros and melodicas that you can hear.”
We’ll have to wait until July 7th for Rain Before Seven… to be out through Erased Tapes but a second advance track, ‘In Re Budd’, is now ours to discover. With sounds seeped in “an Afro Cuban Cafe vibe”, ‘In Re Budd’ is dedicated to Harold Budd. Speaking about it, Jeffes says:
“This was the first piece I ever wrote on the balafon — and the day I was recording it I heard about Harold Budds’ passing away. I never met him but I’ve always loved his work and I felt that the incongruity of the track wouldn’t be at all inappropriate for a dedication.”
Penguin Cafe are offering the single with a delightful video directed by Mihai Feflea. Here it is.