Big Blood - The Grove

LP Edition of 500. Co-Released with There Is No Trouble In Denmark


Vinylization of what was something like the sixth release by Big Blood, originally issued on cassette & CDR in the year 2008. At the time, Big Blood was still a quartet comprised of two flesh and blood humans, along with their two spirit animals, and the sound here maintains some of the acid-folk-witchiness (ala Comus or early Spires That in the Sunset Rise) that marked the band’s pre-Quinnisa era.

Recorded at Big Blood’s South Portland Maine headquarters during the winter of 2007, the instrumentation is largely acoustic (or at least acoustic sounding) apart from the album’s closer, “Low Gravity Blues,” which is built around a big electric slide riff from frequent guest, Nixsa Polosa. But the blaring guitar and harmonica on that track are more than balanced by the weird-yet-delicate approach to most of the other tunes. Even when tracks get stacked up, the effect is akin to a dionysian fire pit party you might attend at some super enlightened youth camp. Acoustic guitars lay down thick chorded rhythm patterns, upon which vocals and other instrumental events are piled. The results display a very particular kind of ecstacy, and an approach to open joy that will get deep under your skin.

Some of the tunes use banjo and ganged vocals for a futurist/primitive hybridization that resembles a geodesic dome made of twigs and feathers. Others mix bluesy guitar tones with vocals that sound more like bits heisted from a space opera being performed in a cave. There are a lot of textures here, but the shifts between them are subtle and supple. So everything slides into you ear like an old friend playing a trick on you. And that is a good feeling to know.

Get it here. Now!

–Byron Coley, 2023