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Jack Hayter - Abbey Wood

Jack Hayter

Abbey Wood

Gare du Nord Records

Released: 23rd March 2018 | 12 track urban folk album

New solo album from former Hefner and Dollboy alumnus and regular collaborator with Ralegh Long and Papernut Cambridge amongst others, Jack's Abbey Wood album is a deeply absorbing set of city folk tales and haunting imagery based (though not exclusively) around a particularly characterful area of South East London. Jack's trademark timeless voice and sometimes intricate, surreal arrangements paint a sometimes dark, always compelling picture......

His name is Jack, and he lived in the back of the Greta Garbo home for wayward boys and girls. paraphrase the immortal Manfred Mann. In fact it was a derelict children's home in London's less than fashionable Abbey Wood. In Jack Hayter's own words; A leaky and abandoned hulk which was demolished when I moved out. Nobody had lived in it for 15 years. I had four kitchens and six bathrooms but none of them worked. I showered under a hose and I cooked with a camping stove. I slept on a bed I made from warehouse pallets...with a big stick waiting for the next break-in. It was cold but it was almost free.

From this potentially unencouraging environment the peripatetic former Hefner musical all-rounder, Jack Hayter, fashioned his new album Abbey Wood. His first full solo outing in fifteen years, Abbey Wood is a paragon of modern era folk within which Hayter presents a series of heartfelt, city-scape vignettes delivered in earthen voice, lyrically charged and embedded in startling arrangements.

Hayter's locus lies somewhere between Roy Harper's and Darren Hayman's, with Kevin Coyne lurking in the basement. But far wider influences drift in through the door to confuse and enchant by gifting peculiar little presents. From the fractured Bert Jansch-esque melancholic love of The Mulberry Tree via the contemplative disgust (there is no other word) of At Crossness Pumping Station to the Kevin Coyne inspired eccentric melange of Mrs. Mainwaring, Abbey Wood is a singularly raw album, both psycho-geographical and historical. Yet its spiritual home lies in modern day London dustbins. It's folk, Jack, but not as we know it.

"A modern folk masterpiece....remarkable."
The Strange Brew Podcast, Album Review
"Cut with the same bruising intimacy as that which used to attach to releases by Lupen Crook, Hayter’s magic is his ability to draw you close into his quietly evocative and peculiarly sleepy headed storytelling"
The Sunday Experience, Album Review
"Perfect vocal delivery.....not only one of the best folk albums of the year, but is a strong contender for our end of year best of list too."
Neon Filler, Album Review
"A wonderful low key but sustaining collection of quixotic folk songs............a lesson in how to make compelling arrangements out of small details."
The Underground of Happiness, Album Review
"A lived-in musical novel, rich with references......the most accomplished and brilliant of testaments."
Monolith Cocktail, Album Review