With a long history in alternative Brit-pop, Chris Helme threw his hat in the ring once again with a stunning new album, The Rookery. Recorded in just eleven days in the Yorkshire Dales, at a country setting called The Rookery (image above), the album went on to be a mix of acoustic folk, psychedelia and 90s alternative rock.
Following the success of Seahorses’ 90’s album, Do It Yourself, and the acclaim of The Yards, Chris Helme returned in the summer of 2012 with the help of producer Sam Forrest (Nine Black Alps) for the new solo album. The record is Helme’s second solo outing after his debut Ashes in 2008 and it was released on CD, vinyl LP and digital download on the 27th August 2012 on Little Num Num Records.
You can see the music video for opening single for the record, Good To Be In Love, below with its is a trippy folk rock style and a look that appears to have been conceived in the collective consciences of Noel Fielding, Salvador Dali and Tim Burton. Though there’s one too many shots of one man and his strum, it’s got a great mix of guitars and strings with comparisons to The Coral’s Butterfly House.
The Rookery track list
- Pickled Ginger – 2:47
- Longway Round – 2:59
- Darkest Days – 3:25
- Plane – 3:41
- The Spindle and the Cauldron – 3:56
- Blindeye – 3:14
- Pleased – 4:55
- Daddies Farm – 3:36
- Summer Girl – 5:11
- Set in Stone – 3:59
- Good to Be in Love – 4:00
Chris Helme’s The Rookery is an exceptional psych-folk album with brilliant fuzzy guitars, acoustic genius, winding strings and a great distorted Mellotron. It flits between light and shade, stepping up in pace only to sink into an impressively dense and well crafted lull, which makes the album a great listen from start to finish. Read our full The Rookery review for more details on our take of the album.
2016 should see him following up once again with his third solo record with news that new single, You’re Too Bad, is on its way. The release is being preceded by his Chris Helme’s 2016 tour, which will feature his new material with sixteen gigs, including stop offs at Cardiff, Manchester, York and Aberdeen.