CIRCULUS – A Lick On The Tip Of An Envelope… (Rise Above)

Circulus are a nine piece band specialising in medieval progressive folk/space rock, and they have recorded an album which if you did not know better you would swear was recorded thirty years ago. All the classic elements of the progressive rock group are there – the complex time signatures, a wide variety of instruments being used – with lashings of flute and organ, and vocals which echo those of bands like Amazing Blondel (and if you have heard of them then you will absolutely love this). ‘Miri It Is’ opens the album with a traditional tune done acapella at the start, soon followed by some great organ and flute interplay. From there on in it is original tunes all the way, save for ‘Swallow’ which was written by Marianne Segal (best known for her sterling work with recently rediscovered 70’s folk rock band Jade), and sung by the composer herself. All of the other tracks on this album are great progressive/folk/space rock, and with the uniform excellence of the songs individual tracks are difficult to highlight. The musicians take their commitment to the band very seriously, dressing in suitably flowery 70’s gear, and mastering such instruments as recorder and crumhorn in their search for medieval authenticity. For anyone mourning the passing of classic progressive music then Circulus will whisk them back to its heyday of the 70’s.