This is a review of "Untitled" recorded by Storyville. The review was written by Sam Saunders in 2002.
The Storyville concept is sound. Excellent music kept simple enough to play live, and intelligent enough to reward repeated listening. The three songs here are written by singer Annabelle Hadland and guitarist/technoid Sam Bartholomew. They are fully formed, grown up, lose yourself songs with great heartbreaking tunes. Annabelle's voice is mellow, seductive and totally convincing: solo or doubled up, isolated or swathed in synth strings, she is in full control. For me, there are echoes of Beth Gibbons and Patti Smith, and a subtle R&B texture too. Thank God for real singers.
The first two tracks are moody, slow tempo affairs with subtle samples and some very tidy live playing from the band. They work well as background mood pieces, but there's lots more there if you want to listen in detail. "Hunter" at track three launches in with a furious tempo snare and high hat thing, and keeps it bubbling for a full five minutes. The voice and tune keep it cool, while the bass works up a deep excitement. And there's some secret treat guitar rush too. Splendid stuff.
It says here that Storyville play the first Friday of every month at Carpe Diem and the third Wednesday at Dr Wu's. Highly recommended.