Siôn Russell Jones – Tŷ’r Stafell
Review by Stephen Nottingham
Siôn Russell Jones’ first Welsh-language release is a six-track EP on SARJ Records, named after the Carmarthenshire home of SRJ’s grandparents: ‘Tŷ’r Stafell’. Memories, the night, and the fleeting passage of time, link this coherent set of songs. Siôn wastes no time in establishing these themes on Wrth Olau’r Lleuad (By the Light of the Moon) and wrapping them in a warmly enveloping tune. Mond Am Eiliad (Just for a Second) was co-written with Caernarfon-based musician Sera, who contributes a lovely vocal that rises as a ticking clock meets an emerging flamenco-like beat. The wonderfully catchy Mas O’r Nef (From Heaven) is followed by the even catchier Duw a Wyr (God only Knows); the latter co-written with Al Lewis, who supplies backing vocals. EP closer Cysga Nawr (Go to Sleep Now) is sang to a loved one or child and, like much of this EP, has some nifty guitar work. Alongside these five new compositions, there is a disconcertingly woozy post-pub version of the popular Welsh song of unrequited love Myfanwy. This concise and robust roots record certainly leaves you wanting more. It comes with smart artwork by Christian G Hill (also responsible for the birds on Siôn’s previous ‘Lost No More’): adult hands with a roll-up doing a child’s drawing of said grandparent’s house.