Marshes is the new incarnation of Beth Porter and the Availables. Having recorded the album before her daughter Molly was born and finishing it after, (thanks to an Indiegogo fund-raising Campaign), it feels like a life time’s journey in making a record. However, the album is a coherent collection of charmingly orchestrated songs with a full band, strings, wind and brass.
The songs are dark, quirky, charming and ethereal and depict themes such as fear, confusion, money, the weather and the odd cheesy love song, all carried by Beth’s pure and unaffected voice.
They have been said to channel Ray Davies, and have been likened to The Incredible String Band, REM, Cat Power, This Is The Kit, Penguin Cafe Orchestra and Radihead!
The album has involved many of Beth’s previous band including Jools Scott on piano (The Duckworths, The Cool Web) Emma Hooper on Viola (Waitress for the Bees), Pete Gibbs on Bass (Count Bobo) Sue Lord and Ian Vorley on Violin (Red Carousel) Paul Macmahon on Drums (Protest Crayon). Producer Luke Cawthra (The Brackish and son of Dr Feelgood’s Gypie Mayo) has brought a cool sound, warmth, clarity some awesome guitar solos to the songs from his studio in Clifton, Bristol.
Beth is also one half of prolific duo The Bookshop Band.
Beth moved from Bristol in the South West of England up to Wigtown, South West Scotland in 2017, where the inspiration for the name Marshes came from.