Cahalen Morrison & Eli West


If you don’t know about Cahalen Morrison & Eli West then give me second to tell you why you need to give it a shot. I’ve spent a lot of my time listening to folk-roots music. I’m fairly well versed in the traditional stuff, and I’ve also listened to a lot of ‘new old time’, and modern bluegrass music. Once in a while someone comes along Who's SO much better than the rest, and takes the wizened baton by either being astonishingly virtuosic, or by writing unbelievably good songs. Channel Morrison & Eli West have done both of these things. They’re absolute geniuses at their instruments, and they write some of the most beautiful songs I’ve heard for a long time. They’re massive, you’re thinking. Nope. They’re not. I went to see them in Green Note in Camden. It was sold out, but there were only about 100 tickets. It was an almost blush inspiringly intimate affair, but hands down one of the best shows I’ve ever been to.

They played two 45 minute sets (something I’ve never seen before), but I could have sat there all night. There were a few moments during the performance when I looked around, and the expressions on peoples faces during songs were fantastic. Few had their eyes open, and a large number of people wore almost climactically euphoric expressions. It was transcendentally good, and we all knew we were witnessing something a bit special.

My favourite songs in the set were ‘Fiddlehead Fern’ and ‘On Gods Rocky Shore’ (linked below) which went into ‘My Lover, Adorned’. If you can remove the image of a dribbling whiskey drenched hill-billy in a grubby vest from your mind, and give any of these songs a good go, you’ll be a happier person for it. I think these guys are the best ‘new’ players in the game, and I can’t wait for next time.