18 March 2014
The A Mighty Big If event returns to The House Of St Barnabas and following the release of The Tyburn Tree the first one will see Richard Strange in conversation with Marc discussing the dark stories contained within. The event takes place on 14 April at The House Of St Barnabas, 1 Greek Street, London and tickets can be obtained by clicking here.
The Guardian: The searing Almond is magnificent all through.
The Times: Almond's voice oozes satanic undertones.
The Observer: The echoing, crepuscular atmosphere is dominated by Almond's impressive neo-operatic singing (some distance from electro-pop!).
Prog Rock Magazine: Marc Almond's committed, theatrical performances work perfectly
Crepsicule Culture: The Tyburn Tree consistently features Almond's flexible and extremely well trained voice with an ever changing score from John Harle. Harle and Almond's influence on the music completely overlap.
The Arts Desk: It's hard to countenance sometimes that there was an era where Marc Almond could have been a bona fide, chart-smashing pop star. His ability to parlay the archest of high camp and the most grotesque of low life into something digestible by genuine mass culture was, from the very beginning, quite uncanny. There was always a sulphurous whiff of something downright Luciferian about him, yet enough fragility to make the act seem all too real – an infinitely more convincing and intriguing character than more recent more self-conscious attempts at 'transgressive' pop like the gallumphing vaudeville clown Marilyn Manson (who tried to steal a little of Almond's cold fire by repurposing his Tainted Love cover). Almond has seemed to fare equally well away from the charts, though. Everything he has done, whether performed to ten people or ten million, has felt like part of one unending secret cabaret which we are just voyeurs in. This latest project with the saxophonist and composer (and writer of the Silent Witness theme!) Harle certainly lets us look in on that cabaret for a while, and it seems to be in full swing, with the album coming over like a cavalcade of deranged acts performing songs and pantomime based around London's dark undercurrents: what Alan Moore describes as the city's "free-associating stone subconscious". Bringing in chunks of William Blake, dollops of nursery rhyme, snippets of narration by psycho-geographer of the capital Iain Sinclair, roaring choirs, roistering electropop, walloping great chunks of prog-punk guitar-strangling and Almond in full operatic mode, it should by rights be really hard work, but in fact it's really quite gripping. In its delirium, it automatically conjures Tim Burton and Jan Švankmajer images in the mind, marionettes, silhouettes, flashing lights and grand guignol, and like everything else in Almond's career, it's quite uncanny and unlikely that he carries it off – but he does.
Record Collector: It's hard to imagine a better-qualified and more ardent master of ceremonies than this erstwhile Mamba and Soft Cellmate for The Tyburn Tree, a 'Dark London' song cycle, which sifts with grim relish through some of the capital city's bleakest historical episodes. The emotional breadth of Almond's compelling, immersive performances.
The Sun: The combination of saxophonist/composer Harle and the theatrical vocals of one-time Soft Cell singer Almond prove perfect for exploring London's sinister side. Harle's atmospheric soundscapes draw on music hall and folk with a distinct whiff of prog rock and are set against Almond's lyrical take on Victorian Gothic horror.
Classic Pop: Almond is having the time of his life with his own lyrics. Ultimately, it's the blend of Almond's delivery and Harle's remarkable score - West End Musical meets gory horror flick - that makes this so remarkable.
Independent On Sunday: Marc Almond fronts the whole song-cycle with great brio.
Music Omh: The music itself is a treat for the ears: splendidly produced, clear and geared towards Almond's voice, the music holds an epic, sweeping, grand quality that befits a project like this. Almond's enunciation and signature vocal timbre is the highlight.
Thames Delta World Service: Marc Almond first ventured into quasi classical territory with John Harle last year, providing vocals on a couple of tracks on Harle's 'Art Music'. Now arrives 'The Tyburn Tree', a fully-fledged collaboration, steeped in theatre, art and poetry.
Uncut: No-one could accuse Marc Almond of trading on former glories: 2003's LP of Russian folk-songs and recent performance soy Mark Ravenhill's 'Ten Plagues' suggest that his artistic choices are becoming increasingly radical. His second outing with acclaimed composer John Harle is a song-cycle exploring the darkest depths of London's history, both real and mythical, pressing William Blake's poetry, nursery rhyme, traditional folk and the writings of Iain Sinclair (who guests) and John Dee into bracingly contemporary service. Almond's richly expressive voice is the unifying thread of a set-piece that demands attention but is far from dour, as the 60's pop-toned My Fair Lady and brilliantly OTT Labyrinth of Limehouse attest.
The Independent: We all know that Marc Almond can sing but it still comes as a shock to hear his thrillingly drawn-out climax to Harle's The Arrival Of Spring, emoting words adapted from William Blake with operatic oomph.
Gramophone Magazine: The first two movements of The Arrival Of Spring are seductively vocal (Marc Almond).
The Arts Desk: Marc Almond - clearly having a ball.
Culture Capital: The almost theatrical vocals on the gorgeous song 'Angel Eyes' have a simple trajectory at first listen, but pull it apart and the melody is unpredictable. Marc Almond relishes every note and every word – his voice is crisply clear. Alongside these pictures he evokes spring breaking after melted frost in the morning. Apparently this piece and the preceding 'In The Wood' were both composed on an iPad, in keeping with how Hockney produced his images.
Jazz Views: Heard on two of the tracks that make up 'The Arrival Of Spring' Almond's rich and full tenor voice graces 'In The Wood' and 'Angel Eyes', singing the words of William Blake against Harle's rich tapestry of strings, and finishes with a magnificent intervallic leap to conclude the second 'movement' and leading the way for the joyous finale of the suite's concluding title track with Sarah Leonard's soaring soprano.
4 March 2014
Marc was the guest on Janice Long's Spoken Word Session last night. It is available to listen to on-line for the next six days via the BBC iPlayer.
21 February 2014
Ahead of the release of The Tyburn Tree on Monday, Marc and John Harle will be on Loose Ends on BBC Radio 4 tomorrow, Saturday 22 February, at 6.15pm performing Black Widow from the album. For further information, to listen online or hear it later via the Listen Again service visit the Loose Ends website.
Marc and John Harle will also feature on the programme Front Row, also on BBC Radio 4, on Thursday 27 February at 7.15pm. For further information, to listen online or hear it later via the Listen Again service visit the Front Row website.
6 February 2014
Yesterday Marc recorded an interview with Mark Radcliffe for the Radcliffe and Maconie show at the BBC. It will be avilable for a short time via the iPlayer but you can hear it now here:
24 January 2014
For anyone that missed it, or those that wish to see it again, Marc's recent appearance on Vintage TV is now available to view in the Vintage TV Library.
16 January 2014
The second part of the Dancing Marquis mini album will be released on 10 February 2014 as an EP containing four tracks, Tasmanian Tiger, Death Of A Dandy, Worship Me Now and Love Is Not On Trial. The EP is now available to pre-order from iTunes. A Limited edition coloured vinyl and CD package is also available to pre-order now direct from Cherry Red.
10 January 2014
On 23 January Vintage TV will be broadcasting the second of The Vintage TV Sessions, hosted by legendary DJ Johnnie Walker, which features live performances and an interview with Marc. Vintage TV is a satellite channel but is also available via their website at http://www.vintage.tv
The Tyburn Tree is to be released on 24 February with a tour in March and now has it's own dedicated web page at www.tyburntree.com. A teaser of the album can be heard at https://soundcloud.com/tyburntree and the track Fortress can be heard at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AN3OdDIBQ_o. There are also official Facebook and Twitter accounts for the release which can be found at https://www.facebook.com/tyburntreeofficial and https://twitter.com/thetyburntree_.