Thursday 12 November 2020

LISTEN: Leif Vollebekk - 'Long Blue Light' & '29 #Strafford APTS'

Without wanting to understate his acclaim, I'd posit that for a lot of you, Leif Vollebekk is one of the best singer-songwriters that you haven't heard of. I hadn't until last year, when I started to receive press for his record New Ways. It was released just over a year ago, while he was touring with fellow Canadians Half Moon Run. I caught them both playing in London and Leif's set was frankly incredible. Utterly compelling. I adore the record, and can't get enough of Blood Brother. So much love for it. 

Following on from the release of the Rest EP earlier this year, Leif is celebrating the one-year anniversary of the record with another two-track release which has me all sorts of excited. Audible gasp upon finding out that one track was a Bon Iver cover. Heavenly. He explains that Long Blue Light is a brand new track which was recorded "during the sessions for New Ways, live with just myself and a drummer, Homer Steinweiss. I had all but abandoned it but this year I kept coming back to it. I added some overdubs and had Cindy Cashdollar finish it off with a gorgeous dobro part. It was supposed to fade out but I rather liked how it just falls apart at the end." 

Talking about the Bon Iver cover (hold onto your hats, folks) Leif explains his fascination of the record: "when that Bon Iver album, 22, A Million, came out, it put something of a spell on me. It acted on me the way records of my youth did. I could take a walk in that record and see things. I still do. I started playing around with this song some December evening way up north, when the light of dusk lasts hours and hours and everything goes blue. The snow, the faces, the houses. The two songs are a bit wrapped up together."

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