Seasonal Sevens: Summer
Emily Scott/ Hélène Renaut
Side A Pond Dipping
Side AA Bumblebee
Starting the Seasonal Sevens series with two perfectly sweet and strawberry flavoured summertime folk/ pop songs that usher in some summer sun from Emily Scott and Hélène Renaut.
Side A's 'Pond Dipping' is a jazzy little punt down river that evokes the quintessential British summer of a bygone era when hot summers seemed predictable, school holidays went on for months and time was joyfully wasted away messing about in the water with a net and a jam jar of tadpoles and water boatmen. Emily's vocals are sweet and full of harmony and, with Malcolm Le Maistre (ex-Incredible String Band) and Pete Baynes bringing banjo and ukulele to the track, an 'old timey' feel is captured. With ragtime shuffle, chinking percussion and a spiraling, quirky recorder solo this foot tapping sepia toned track meanders into a delicious end.
If side A reflects the first early flush of summer then double A side's 'Bumblebee' is lazy- hazy midsummer, when the grass is long, people are dreamy with cider and sunburn, wildflowers dot the wheat fields and the drone of insects and drifting flower seed fills the air. Recorded by Jason Quever (Papercuts) in his San Francisco studio, Hélène's ode to the bumblebee captures the vintage analogue warmth and bubblegum, psych folk of the 1960's, bringing a distinct and refined European flavour with her poetic lyrics and signature accent. Mellowness is in abundance with Jasmyn Wong of The Skygreen Leopards providing the rhythm section, performing with the laid back pace of a wasp drunk on fermenting apples. Shimmering glockenspiel and sugar coated backing vocals turn the track into a sultry summer romance, casually heading in the direction of a hot and heavy Indian summer.