Marry Waterson – an essential part of the fabric of folk history in England – and Adrian Crowley – one of Ireland’s most acclaimed talents – collaborate for the first time on 'Cuckoo Storm’, a distinctive and powerfully lyrical album of 11 original songs produced with Jim Barr (Portishead).

The 'Cuckoo Storm' might never have been, were it not for a social media post Crowley wrote on a wintery late-night walk in a quiet neighbourhood of Dublin during lockdown. Struck by Waterson's previous album ‘Death Had Quicker Wings Than Love’ (co-written with David A Jaycock), he wanted to mark the moment and pressed ‘send’ into the ether with no way of knowing what would follow. Drawn to his voice and seeing a kindred spirit in his poetic lyrics, Waterson was touched by his message and responded by asking if he would be interested in working together. His answer was a resounding ‘yes.’

Initially, they began by building a collection of songs and from that it became clear an album was in the offing and the seeds of ‘Cuckoo Storm’ were sewn. Waterson and Crowley found their voices melded easily to form something rich and intimate. Their creative roles exchanged fluidly, whether lyric and or melody-writer, enjoying the excitement of another colouring in their work: a delightful, dopamine rush, which pushed each artist on to create something that couldn’t exist outside that particular partnership.

Of single ‘Watching The Starlings’, Adrian tells us “I wrote this song a couple of years ago and it had been living with me unheard by others for a while. There is a place I would stay whenever I was in London, thanks to a kind friend who would give me the key and let me stop there for a while. It was a place in a secluded court with foxes and blue jays, not far from the Heath. That’s where this song is set. It had a presence of its own and a particular kind of magic. In the song, the narrator is giving instructions, almost like one gives directions to someone, like an invitation describing how to get there; the cul-de-sac, the gate, the archway, number 11. And in the song the narrator is waiting for this someone to arrive. It’s the closing of the day with the change of light when the murmurations begin to cavort around the patch of sky visible from the window. And a kind of quiet euphoria arises from a sense of being on the cusp of a moment that is life-affirming and absolute.”

‘Cuckoo Storm’ is a deeply compelling album. A serendipitous collaboration that has resulted in a collection of beautifully crafted songs, sung by two voices that are a powerful match. Waterson’s brilliantly distinctive voice is underpinned by Crowley’s rich baritone and together it’s an intoxicating mix.

Joining Marry Waterson (vocals) and Adrian Crowley (vocals, piano, electric guitar, mellotron, harmonium, music box clarinet, marxophone, synth) on Cuckoo Storm are Jim Barr (Portishead) bass, lap-steel guitar; Pete Judge (Get The Blessing) trumpet, flugelhorn; Jake McMurchie (Get The Blessing) sax; James Gow, cello; Seán Mac Erlaine bass clarinet; Lisa Dowdall viola d’amore and Rob Pemberton on drums.

About Marry Waterson

Marry Waterson is part of the fabric of folk history, making her first appearance when she was just 12 years old on the album ‘A True Hearted Girl’ (Topic Records) with her mother Lal, and Aunt Norma Waterson. Although there are echoes of her mother’s singular voice, Marry is as unique and daring as they come. Often collaborating with different writers, musicians, and producers, she stretches the boundaries of not only folk but songwriting itself, where real life is refracted through the myths, legends and proverbs that shape the memory.

Waterson sings her songs into existence. She doesn’t play any instruments. Neither does she sit at a computer screen, using state-of-the-art technology to recreate the music that appears in her head. Rather, words appear, phrased in a way that suggests music. With melody comes rhythm. Only then does she sing them so that her fellow musicians can hear what she hears. Waterson is described as having "thrived on communal music making while developing highly original and distinctly English performance styles of [her] own." Her most recent One Little Independent release was the critically acclaimed Blackletter Garland, as part of Hack-Poets Guild.

About Adrian Crowley

Adrian Crowley is a singer, composer, songwriter, lyricist from Galway, based in Dublin and was born in Sliema, Malta.

Crowley has released eight albums to date, with his debut A Strange Kind arriving in 1999. He followed this with When You Are Here You Are Family (2002), A Northern Country (2004), Long Distance Swimmer (2007), Season of the Sparks (2009) and "I See Three Birds Flying" (2012) In a 2005 Rolling Stone interview, Ryan Adams cited Crowley when asked "Who's the best songwriter that no one's heard of". The Irish Times placed this artist at number eight in a list of "The 50 Best Irish Acts Right Now". Crowley has won the Choice Music Prize for Irish Album of the Year on one occasion for Season of the Sparks and been nominated on two another occasion for Long Distance Swimmer and "I See Tree Birds Flying".

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