Every so often, pioneers emerge whose imaginative approach to playing traditional music causes people to sit up and listen. Peter Knight and John Spiers (whilst hardly qualifying as ’emerging’ artists) are one such example. Their latest album ‘Both in a Tune’ has received outstanding critical acclaim, and was named as one of the ‘10 Best New Albums from Around the World’ by the influential music journal, SONGLINES.
Peter Knight, as part of Steeleye Span’s classic 1970s line-up, helped invent a brand of folk rock that is still influential today, John Spiers as co-founder of the almighty Bellowhead has had an equally profound impact on the landscape of traditional music over the last two decades.
Having first come together as a ‘one off’ gig at FolkEast in 2016, the duo has developed into one of the most thrilling exponents of traditional music, always consciously respectful of their heritage but not afraid to bend the rules.
It’s largely through touring as a duo that they’ve been able to explore what has become an extraordinary partnership, giving them the confidence to record their latest studio album, Both in a Tune. It’s an exquisite collection that makes use of well-known traditional pieces, repurposing them as jumping-off points into the most enchanting exploration.
The pairing of violin and melodeon is not a new one, but in the hands of Knight and Spiers, improvisation and invention meet the listener at every turn. Together they have created a musical document that resonates with history, but also something that should inspire future generations of musicians to engage with Britain’s folk dancing heritage, and the beautiful, mysterious tunes that can be found within that heritage.
These gifted musicians create a live performance to be remembered for a long time.