Among the most artistically successful alchemists of Indie Psychedelic Folk, Maine-based duo Arborea consists of Shanti Curran (vocals, banjo, "banjimer" [a banjo-dulcimer hybrid], harmonium, ukulele, sawing fiddle, and hammered dulcimer) and Buck Curran (guitars, vocals, sawing fiddle, flute, and banjo). Weaving together strands of indie rock, Appalachian folk, psychedelia, and ambient music into what has been called avant-folk, Arborea's songs combine delicate beauty and mystical lyrics with the timelessness of ancient songs (sometimes literally, as they occasionally rework old folk and blues songs into new shapes). Fortress of the Sun is their fifth full-length album, and their first on ESP-Disk'.
Shanti Curran: vocals, banjo, guitar, harmonium, ukulele, hammered dulcimer; Buck Curran: vocals, acoustic and electric guitars, flute, Ebow banjo
With: Anders Griffen: drums on “Pale Horse Phantasm”; Greg Boardman: upright bass on “Daughters of Man” and “Rider” and viola on “Cherry Tree Carol”; Michael Krapovicky: electric bass on “After the Flood Only Love Remains”
Produced, Created, Recorded and Mixed by Buck Curran and Shanti Curran; Mastered by Harris Newman
Pale Horse Phantasm
Daughters of Man
After the Flood Only Love Remains
When I Was on Horseback
Rua das Aldas
Cherry Tree Carol
NPR's Bob Boilen included their SXSW performance on his "Favorite Concerts of 2012" list.
Rolling Stone's David Fricke included their previous album, Red Planet, on his list of "The Best Under-the-Radar Albums of 2011" and called their music "trance-folk that, at every turn in the slipstream, seems to hail from another country: the murder ballads of Appalachia; the plucked-string stasis and Om drone of New York minimalism; the iridescent-Middle East imagination of the Incredible String Band."
The BBC wrote of their 2009 album House of Sticks, "Sounding like frayed, half-remembered, hand-me-down tunes, shaped and altered with each retelling, the fluidity and the sparse application of instruments wherein Eastern and Western modes gently mingle is the secret of this album's startling beauty."