James Yorkston and The Athletes | RUG168 | Released: 10/11/03
The new James Yorkston ep is a something of a revelation. A five-track song cycle comprised of original material, a stunning cover of Lal and Mike Waterson's 'Scarecrow', and three newly arranged traditional songs, 'Someplace Simple' marks a subtle change for James Yorkston. Old traits are still present - exquisite and suitably understated arrangements, delicate playing, a voice of warmth and rough texture - but on thisrecord James seems to be in a different place from whence he came with 2001's 'Moving Up Country'. The sound is gloriously sparse, where it was once glorious and near symphonic, and the starkness of the songs themselves lends itself to James' subtle interpretations, and the smaller ensemble with which he is playing.