Bright Star Recordings – 2002 – 26 minutes
No it's not that girl from the Go-Gos, but a fresh-faced Mancunian lass and her guitar. Although Jane Weaver sounds like a musical chameleon, her vocals are hauntingly distinctive. From PJ Harvey to Harriet Wheeler and Hope Sandoval, her influences bend strongly towards the women who have dominated underground music in the last couple of decades.
Weaver gathered the delicate fabric of her songs for this debut album largely due to persuasion from Andy Votel (her long-term boyfriend) of Twisted Nerve. Clocking in at a succinct 26 minutes, it's almost half an hour of stirringly beautiful heartache. Seemingly simple arrangements of piano, vocal, guitar and the lushest percussion evolve into multi-faceted musical delights.
Like a lullaby version of Polly Harvey's 'Bodybag', the title track is all eerie strings and swirly girly vocals. Just when the choppy guitars of 'A Bird Stole The Gold' make you think you're stuck in a morass of Harvey inflections, Weaver steals your heart. 'The Heart That Buckled You' is whispered passion and Mazzy Star stylistics. 'Flowers Bloom Again' is a sleepy infusion of guitars and soothing vocals.
For a girl who nearly gave up the idea of making her own music, we should be thankful for Mr Votel's perseverance. Jane Weaver's vocals are an unbroken eggshell, delicate and pure and gently buffed by the best of influences. Sit by the fire on a rainy day (which you can still do in Ireland in May) lie back and soak up these frail, but full, tunes.
Tracklisting: Like An Aspen Leaf – A Bird Stole The Gold – Bow & Arrow, Ball of String – The Heart That Buckled You – Ridiculous – Flowers Bloom Again – Why Don't You Smile