Bishopskin: The Christian folk band set to change religious musical mantra, for the grace of good.￼
October 1st saw the official launch of Bishopskin’s brand new single ‘Ave Maria’ and having had the privilege to preview this track, we’re excited to see how this song will be received, and whether it’ll change people’s perceptions of religious folk. Ave Maria, of course, is a song title many of us are familiar with but Bishopskin’s version in an altogether differing experience. Far from the somewhat morbid connotations of the Schubert classic, we’re pretty sure this Christian band’s version wouldn’t be as welcomed at funerals, which is a good thing. Lyrically Ave Maria is slightly obscure, but that’s ok and if the right words are used to provide texture to a track then the story is not always important. That’s not to say there isn’t any ambiguity within the song and possibly the odd hidden message, so there’s room for some interpretation.
Listen to ‘Ave Maria’ by Bishopskin on Spotify:
Tiger Nicholson voice is almost Bowie-esque on many occasions, with a suggestion of 80’s legend Falco – a big statement, we know, but it’s true and his sound is intriguing and compelling. His unique voice is complimented wonderfully by the hugely talented guitarist James Donovan. Both members have found a way to create folk music, but with more layers and more depth, traditional in some ways, but with more substance.
Ave Maria is interesting and captivating from the start, the trumpet intro and a hint of harmonica along with Tiger’s monologue has you first believing, that this song will play out quite differently. We then have James’ fingerstyle approach to his guitar solo which re directs us and the intrigue continues. We’re also huge fans of the production and notably the way in which Ave Maria includes some ethereal moments to break up the theatrics, it’s a nice light break amidst this epic musical journey and fits perfectly. Imagine wild horses running along a beach, free and bountiful but with a sense of passion and purpose, that’s the sort of vision you may have when listening to this song.
Most noticeable about this track is the consistent almost tribal drumbeat, it’s a principle, much like in their previous single ‘I Was Born an Island’ a feature we’re hoping will be their musical mantra and staple going forward. It makes BIshopskin distinguishable from all the genres they include and they’re taking Christian folk to another level. A level where no matter your views on religious connotations within music, their sound is quite simply, epically good. Ave Maria sparks and triggers all the necessities of a decent folk rock song and you’ll be more than excited to see what they release next. We know we are.