‘Hodmadod Meets Gogmagog’ by Hodmadoddery - precise music and voices

(July 02, 2016)

First encountering the musical murmurings of Tony Carter and Steve Henwood, better known as Hodmadoddery (although not as well-known as they deserve) through such album offerings as ‘Kaolin & Morphine’ and ‘Two Heads’ the arrival of their latest output ‘Hodmadod Meets Gogmagog’ delivers exactly as expected. Precise music and voices from two guys with acoustic Hodmadod meets Gogmagogguitars, immersed in tight-as-you-like harmonies and singing a mix of songs from this land’s folk tradition, a couple of self-penned originals, alongside compositions from sources wide and various ... Ewan MacColl, Lennon & McCartney, Roy Harper and Page & Plant.

Should that mix intrigue you, then this album will not disappoint. You will almost certainly be fascinated, and perhaps if Hodmadoddery are unknown to you wonder how you could have missed them. From the traditional ballad ‘Willie O’Winsbury’ through Robin Williamson’s ‘By Weary Well’, a fine version of Roy Harper’s ‘Tom Tiddler’s Ground’ and their own idiosyncratic look at John Lennon’s transcendental meditation-influenced ‘Across the Universe’, and their version of ‘The Battle of Evermore’ will enthral.

Listening to Hodmadoddery is always changing because the spread of influence and range of interpretation appears boundless, and from experience it is. Together as a duo for years has imbued their music with a distinctive ‘oneness’ that is rarely found in a duo ... but don’t take my word for it, find them here:

‘Hodmadod Meets Gogmagog’ is performed by Steve Henwood (vocals, acoustic guitar) Tony Carter (vocals, acoustic guitar, electric/glissando guitar, e-bow) with John Joe Kelly (bodhran) Rachel Cross (fiddle) Ed Boyd and Leon Hunt (string oddments). And should you want to know more about the reference to ‘Gogmagog’ ... get the album or move to Cambridge.

Review: Tim Carroll

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