Langan Frost Wane will release their debut self-titled album on Nashville’s Goldstar Recordings July 23, 2021. The project is the collaboration of three songwriters, writing in the folk tradition and drawing candidly from the folk revival of the mid-twentieth century. It began as a vessel for Brian Langan (Langan) and RJ Gilligan (Frost) to explore a territory they otherwise had no outlet for in their music. While Langan’s past work with The Swims and Needle Points was geared more towards well-crafted pop and boogie, Frost’s output from Meddlesome Bells and Dark Web involved heavier punk-edged riffs. It was in Langan, Frost, & Wane that they found a common ground. This body of work is the culmination of those long hours spent searching for what is not lost, but perhaps sometimes forgotten.
The group is driven by Langan and Frost’s ﬁnger-plucked melodies on guitar, complimented with found sound, instrumentation of the Middle and Far East, India, the Mediterranean, and Appalachia. Complimenting the lilting guitars are bouzouki, mandolin, harpsichord, flutes, violin and organ. Langan Frost Wane has achieved something truly remarkable – a style as familiar as it is un-categorizable, it is truly cohesive despite their wide array of influences. Langan Frost Wane embodies a through line that takes a listener from the sounds of Donovan and Bert Jansch to current performers like Cate LeBon and Khruangbin.
As work on the album began, themes emerged. What is it that allows a song to be playful, yet somber? How can the music tell a story on its own, apart from words? It was the same territory that the wild raucous ﬂutes found on early Incredible String Band records occupied, or better still, the second half of Donovan’s A Gift From A Flower To A Garden. They set about to capture it. The first single, “King Laughter” combines Middle Eastern-tinged ascending guitar lines and percussion, blending seamlessly with traditional folk, but gently twisted with psyche-rock fuzziness. “Perhaps the Sorcerer” will be released in June, it features ethereal vocal harmonies alongside bouzouki, mandolin and flutes.
Frost ran a small studio and ﬁeld recording label in Philadelphia, Bells Records, allowing the duo to dive into different tracking arrangements and experimentations, building out each song organically over a period of time. After wrapping up a season of sessions, Frost suggested Nam Wayne (Wane) to Langan as a possible third collaborator. Wane and Frost had been trading folk songs for some time and it became clear he was on a similar quest. After an evening of impromptu song writing among the three it was settled, and the project solidiﬁed.