This is what Sligo heartstring-puller Pearse McGloughlin and English 'electronicist' Justin Grounds got up to last winter, a transatlantic (one here, the other Canada) tag-team project inspired by Dostoevsky's The Idiot.

If the arts branch of the Kremlin hands out gongs for avoiding pomposity against all odds then they each deserve one for the mantelpiece.

It's a listen-by-candlelight record that doesn't outstay its welcome and is more accessible than the concept suggests. Lovers of singer-songwriter fragility and low-key electronics are likely to be satisfied as the wick burns down.

In a world of perfect tie-ins, Idiot Songs would come bundled with the book: McGloughlin and Grounds' big achievement here is to make you hungry to read or re-read it after listening.

They should offer their services for more soundtrack work - and think about getting together next summer to do something a little sunnier.

Harry Guerin