You might think that contemporary Welsh language folk doesn’t have much of a foothold in East London, but a packed room for tonight’s set from 9Bach – just two weeks after the release of their darkly gorgeous second album Tincian – proves otherwise.
Their line up nicely replicates the breadth of their album’s instrumentation – incorporating sounds from glockenspiels to a harp – but the delicacy of touch is what comes across most from tonight’s set. Songs like “Llwynog” build to mighty crescendos, but they take their time in quietly arriving at their destination, subtly exploring their shifting textures.
Singing exclusively in Welsh, Lisa Jen’s gorgeous melodies uncurl slowly, drawing an ambiguous line between beauty and melancholy. The words may be alien to many, but the weight of tradition which they draw from, and her command over the unique sounds of the language, makes tonight’s set ravishing, whether or not you speak the language.
Yr Eneth Gadd Ei Gwrthod
Bwthyn Fy nain
Ffarwel Mae Nhw’n Dwedyd