Hailed as the ‘the green shoots growing from the very top of the English folk family tree’, Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker have been winning awards since 2012, culminating in two BBC Folk Award nominations and widespread critical acclaim for their first album ‘Fire and Fortune’.
But one listen to the new album ‘Nothing Can Bring Back The Hour’ and you'll hear that this is music that looks forward as well as back.
They bring together honest, uncompromising songwriting with the masterpieces of a tradition to give you something audacious and assured.
You might hear a medieval madrigal followed by a soundscape of layers of Josienne's flawless voice. You might hear Ben's signature fingerstyle guitar paired with laconic, meandering jazz trumpet.
This duo is driven by what feels true to the song, however bleak, however exposing, however technically difficult.
New audiences from other walks of life aren’t quite prepared for the realisation that they just fell in love with a folk song. But audiences everywhere are falling for this duo because this is musicianship of the highest calibre.
And while you never know what you will hear next, you can always count on that.
Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker are currently touring in the UK, continental Europe and America.to top
St Mary's Church
“a truly polished and elegant album ensuring that a hush falls over an attentive and absorbed audience... A triumph of an album”
“so damn good”
“sweet vocals combining exquisitely with…crisply delivered guitar”
“a thing of great beauty”
“something rather special”
“‘Fire & Fortune’ shouts classic album with every nuance and note”
“a true folk jewel”
“Beautiful and simple.”
“A gorgeous compilation”
“the green shoots growing from the very top of the English folk family tree”
“This intriguing record is definitely more than the sum of its already considerably intriguing parts”
“A major album, from major players, with a high score. Because it’s worth it.”
“Josienne and Ben are going to be big... finely crafted with clever lyrics... a real grower”
“an album that repays attentive listening”
“...poignant and strangely beautiful.....with it's restrained power and grace”
“This is an album to play in your own time to truly appreciate”
“a remarkable album”
“‘Fire & Fortune’ is a modern-day descendant of several milestones in the British folk music. That it belongs to the genre's best albums of recent years, I have no reason whatsoever to deny”
“this album is definitely a must”
“in Fire & Fortune we have an album that deserves to open another new world to music fans”
“no ordinary folk album”
“Josienne's songs are traditional and sound like they could be from the sixties or seventies, or long, long before - which really means they are classic and absolutely means you should listen to them. Josienne's voice, which is mesmerising live, is similarly hypnotic on this album, it's full of texture and emotion but never falters and never sounds frail.”
For Folk's Sake on One Light is Gone (2010)
“This EP brims with the confidence of a duo who are building on their well deserved critical acclaim that has followed them since they released their 2010 debut 'One Light is Gone'. Whilst their last album The Seas Are Deep featured some great favourite folk songs from the likes Silver Dagger and My Donal this EP feels like they are tapping another seam in their musical inventory that demonstrates the breadth of their talents more than ever before.”
Folk Radio UK on Homemade Heartache EP (2012)
“Ben and Josienne are a delicate, winding and unwinding proposition that requires close attention... She has this voice that's like a precision tool for making golden, ringing shapes in the air ... It's as if they pull in all the energy in the room, concentrate it in some kind of musical alchemy and then spin it into shimmering cathedrals of sound.”
Emma Hartley's Glamour Cave gig review at The Slaughtered Lamb
“... quality emotional storytelling with multi-layered vocals and a well-judged accompaniment from guitar and percussion. As a well balanced duo with a subtle approach to their music, Clarke and Walker have produced an elegant and engaging album.”
Bright Young Folk on The Seas Are Deep (2011)
“A remarkable debut album, alive and accomplished, one that draws on a musical heritage and adds a new chapter to the canon.”
FATEA Magazine on One Light Is Gone
“You can tell from her own songs that Sandy and to a lesser extent Annie Briggs have guided her style and performance; you can also tell that she left plenty of room for herself in those songs too. In Ben Walker, she has an excellent musical partner. His playing is so very very subtle. He delivers on song after song, supporting Josienne's lead by lending his strength, it leads to a sound that is the sweetness below the bitterness of the subject matter within the songs.”
FATEA Magazine - live gig review
“A single candle is relit on the British folk front... a stunning debut ripe with promise and enchanting in its impassioned delivery.”
“One Light Is Gone more than holds its own among other British folk records and deserves to attract due recognition”
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