Release Year: 2017
Curse Of Lono’s full-length debut, featuring the singles ‘Pick Up The Pieces’ and ‘Send For The Whisky’. Produced by Oli Bayston (aka Boxed In).
Founded and fronted by Felix Bechtolsheimer, formerly the singer-guitarist in British roots pioneers Hey Negrita, Curse Of Lono formed in early 2015, though the songs on ‘Severed’ were written over a 14-year period. They range from the perky, Paul Simon-ish ‘Pick Up The Pieces’ to the more lugubrious ‘He Takes My Place’, the almost jazzy ‘London Rain’ and the rootsy, rhythmic ‘Send For The Whiskey’. The album belongs as much to the Americana tradition and old faithfuls such as Little Feat as it does to more modern, playful practitioners of the form such as The National and Beck.
Lyrically, the songs cover themes including infidelity and sexual jealousy, the death of friends, and Felix’s personal struggle with heroin addiction.
“Although ‘Severed’ is a dark record in places, it is not an addiction record,” says Felix. “It’s about growing up enough to be able to share a drink with the ghosts of the past without letting them push you around.”
“If Dangerous living bothers you, look away now – but for everyone else, Curse Of Lono are a new beacon of darkness.”
“The slide-fuelled romp ‘Five Miles’ and the evocative ‘London Rain’, with its ‘Riders On The Storm’-recalling Fender Rhodes vamps, are revelations, as Bechtolsheimer offers a sinewy, cinematic take on big-sky country roots rock.”
“Into Bon Iver? Try Curse Of Lono.”
“One of the most exciting new bands around… Mixing influences like Wilco, The Velvet Underground and The Doors, there’s no shortage of highlights and heartfelt songs on this ten-track album.”
Louder Than War
“The best Shins-cum-Fleet Foxes record the world will ever hear… Easily stands out as the best record of 2017. A record so brilliant and accomplished that, in a fairer world, would outsell anything else on the radio today.”
Performer Magazine (US)
“Curse Of Lono achieve the right balance of lived-in authenticity and self-aware style, knowing when to borrow a few classic tricks and when to bare their souls.”
“A cinematic journey down the rabbit hole of Americana… A stumble through hell and high water was never so alluring… (‘Severed’) pulls off the difficult task of offering a fresh take on rootsy Americana, in part thanks to its leader’s poetic lyrics (Faulkner would be proud), and in part due to a cinematic sweep that owes much to a band like Tindersticks or the recent soundtracks by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis.”
Jim DeRogatis, WEBZ91.5 Chicago
“A remarkably coherent and well-crafted debut album that holds you rapt from start to finish.”
“One of the most exciting things to come out of the UK in years. There is not a weak track on the album.”
New Noise Magazine (US)
“A gorgeous album.”