Painted Spoken (London)

Shaun Belcher’s unique creation Trailer Star appears on two albums, store the first by Trailer Star himself, buy Suit of Nettles. The second is a beautiful tribute album, Moon Over the Downs on Super Tiny Records, dedicated to the tragic victim of a automobile accident “on a deserted downland bend high above Newbury.” It uses Trailer Stars lyrics set to each of the performers’ own compositions. Trailer Star has the same relationship to Belcher as the nearly real artist Nat Tyler has to his creator William Boyd. Though there is fun to be had in “signalling” Berkshire born and bred Trailer Star’s “pivotal position in the development of English country blues” this is a project with lyrical and musical depth. Belcher on Suit and the dozen plus musicians on Moon play and sing it straight, exploring non-metropolitan England through varieties of American form. Oh, and £4 from every sale of Moon goes to Cancer Research UK.

Richard Price

available online at