Release Date: Nov 18, 2014
Record label: Bird
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Rock, Alternative Singer/Songwriter, Indie Folk
This former psych-folk singer has ditched the latter half of that appellation and boosted the former: The Silver Globe owes an audible debt to the space-rock of Hawkwind in its first half, even sampling that band’s Star Cannibal for the central theme of The Electric Mountain. But The Silver Globe doesn’t actually sound much like Hawkwind, largely because of Weaver’s voice: one of those cut-glass, unfailingly true English voices, completely untouched by even the slightest tinge of R&B, that have the ability to make a song sound like the soundtrack to a chilly drawing room. Cells, in fact, sounds more like a B-side from Saint Etienne – never a band obviously troubled by the desire to remake In Search of Space – than anything Dave Brock ever came near.
The latest album from Widnes singer-songwriter Jane Weaver sees her continuing to fly in the face of convention. A loose concept album of the most cosmic order that appears to concern itself with allegorical tales of an unreachable planet, The Silver Globe matches its lyrical ambition with a bold mix of krautrock by way of the North West: synth-heavy woozy prog ballads and DayGlo pop. Central to this are Weaver’s vocals, veering from the icy and dread-filled Argent to the gleeful falsetto of Don’t Take My Soul.
On the fringes of Manchester’s independent rock scene for over two decades now, Jane Weaver’s solo albums have largely been folky affairs. Experimentation has always been present, though, and on ‘The Silver Globe’ it becomes the definitive theme. Beginning with ‘Argent’ – eight minutes of cruise-control krautrock – is a solid indicator that compromise is not to be had here.
Jane Weaver is a transformed woman. After years as a folky, slightly leftfield singer songwriter, The Silver Globe sees her taking a full-scale leap into the cosmic void of contemporary space rock. And it's fantastic. As one of the main figures at the archival Finders Keepers label, Weaver's clearly got impeccably exotic tastes, and 2010's The Fallen By Watch Bird signposted this new direction, particularly the interstellar valediction of the title track, but The Silver Globe is arguably her most sonically adventurous work to date.