FolkWorld #81 11/2023
© Richard Penguin Press & Promotion

Tracks on a musical threshold, waiting to be let in…

Finn Collinson

Artist Video Finn Collinson @ FROG

Folk East

Inspiring the Next Generation

Finn Collinson

Finn Collinson "The Threshold", Artist Audio Old School Music, 2022

The Threshold is the new album from contemporary folk musician Finn Collinson. Forged in Finn’s native East Anglia but heavily inspired by his four years living and studying in London, the album is a meeting point of old and new, rural and urban, traditional and contemporary.

Widely regarded as one of the foremost recorder players on the English folk circuit, Finn Collinson has been steadily gaining a strong reputation for his energetic and creative performances. Building on the success of his 2019 debut album Call To Mind, described as ‘a work of true quality’ (FATEA) and ‘a deeply rewarding display of musical storytelling’ (EDS), the new album sees Finn deepen his flourishing relationship with the contemporary folk genre.

Across its six instrumental and four vocal tracks, The Threshold demonstrates a diverse subject matter, ranging from the driving folk-rock of Victorian ghost story Jerry Bundler to the layered soundscapes and sparkling melodies of Big Smoke, inspired by the effects of climate change. Finn’s distinctive tune style ties together the material, with a respectful eye on the past but a strong grounding in the present.

Joining Finn on The Threshold is his regular touring band for 2022, featuring long-time collaborator Emma Beach on oboes and vocals, alongside Archie Churchill-Moss (Sam Kelly, False Lights, Tom Moore & Archie Moss) on guitar and diatonic accordion, and Evan Carson (Sam Kelly, Honey & The Bear, The Drystones) on bodhran and percussion.

With guest contributions from Tom Leader and Simon Chorley, mixing and mastering by Josh Clark and Nick Cooke, and stunning artwork and strings by Finn’s sister Rowan Collinson, the album feels like a true collaborative effort with each contributor’s creative talents given opportunities to shine around Finn’s playing and compositions.

“This music feels like a real representation of the last few years of my life”, Finn reflects. “I’m pleased with how cohesive the album sounds, but despite this, I think you can hear how my musical horizons have broadened since my last album.” Indeed, alongside his own compositions, The Threshold sees Finn explore fragments of music dating back many centuries, from the baroque sensibilities of Pool’s Hole to the title track The Threshold, which charts Finn’s influences across three different tunes from three different centuries.

Finn’s music pushes boundaries, challenging listeners to consider repertoire and instruments in new and exciting settings. These ten tracks all sit patiently on a musical threshold, waiting to be let in…

Photo Credits: (1)-(2) Finn Collinson Band (by Rowan Collinson). (unknown/website).

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