The Melodic are a quietly radical band. Conscious and quiet, they are the first young English band to lionise Chilean neo-folk rebel Victor Jara since Sandinista-era Clash. Maybe the most innovative English folk band since Pentangle’s jazz/folk fusion of the early 70s, they harness a syncretic sound decorated with charango and kora that makes you think of what would have happened if Paul Simon was raised an Englishman in Brixton. Lovers of the studio who let the story of their songs unfold slowly like Leonard Cohen, The Melodic’s stunning debut album Effra Parade is self recorded in a sound proofed boy’s bedroom over years with a baroque line-up of 18 instruments. But if this is the first you have heard of this band in their early 20s then consider this. The Melodic have never been in a rush and have never done much shouting.
The Melodic offer a vibrant new brand of afro-folk-pop that, while inspired by folk contemporaries, incorporates an assortment of influences from around the world, its members utilizing instruments such as the Charango, Melodica and Kora to create a music that joyously defies categorization. The group's members came of age in the South London neighborhood of Brixton amidst bustling streets and open air markets reverberating with a rich assortment of musics from around the world. In the distinctly English tradition of sonic assimilation, they found influence in the sounds they were hearing.
As lead singer Huw Williams explains, “Brixton is a real melting pot of different people so it doesn’t feel inappropriate for us to introduce sounds from around the world into our music, there was South American and African music around us all the time, as well as reggae and dub music.” In the end, the young band has created a vibrant new music which references contemporary artists such as Belle & Sebastian, The Magnetic Fields and the Decemberists, exhibits a clear reverence for past masters Paul Simon and Bert Jansch and mixes in elements from Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa to create a sound entirely their own.