What’s the sound of solitude? Cate Le Bon has an idea.
She’s a Welsh artist who first played around like-minded skewed musicians such as Gruff Rhys (from Super Furry Animals), Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci and even John Cale. With playmates like that it’s no wonder Le Bon’s music is adventurous, quirky and playful.
In 2013, Cate Le Bon bought a one-way ticket from rainy Wales to sunny California and has since found new collaborators in the likes of Kevin Morby, White Fence, Eleanor Friedberger and Bradford Cox (Deerhunter).
That doesn’t sound lonesome at all, does it? Cate Le Bon’s self-imposed solitude started when she moved into a cottage far away to carve wooden furniture by day and to write music by night.
The musical result is her fifth album, Reward (2019), which is exactly was the title says. The album has reaped stellar reviews and it was shortlisted for the much sought-after Mercury Prize.
Cate Le Bon’s indie music is still unpredictable and off-the-wall. Reward fuses Le Bon’s enigmatic avant-garde impulses with her penchant for folky grandeur. The music is like a lush, wild garden full of funny plants and colourful flowers that grow in all directions at once. Piano chords are joined by pealing electric guitars, softly glowing electronics and saxophones – and the overall sound is warm and sunlit.
When Cate Le Bon and her band returns to Roskilde Festival (she first played here in 2016), you can expect a fun, freaky and fervent performance from one of Wales’ tender oddballs.