Eclectic is a word that gets overused in music reviews, but there are few that fit The Television Of Cruelty better; unexpected, often eerie and unsettling, ‘The Winchecombe Meteorite’ is a narrative tale telling the story of a big chunk of space debris which landed on the driveway of a house smack in the middle of Suburban England in February 2021, amongst the lockdown of the Coronavirus pandemic and the echoing divisions of Brexit and the Black Lives Matter protests.
Musically, there’s a mixture of folk, prog, and out and out rock; guitars, yes, and drums, but also flutes and a melodica. It sounds a little like New Model Army back in their ‘Vengeance’ and ‘Thunder and Consolation’ perfection heyday, mixed with ‘Space Oddity’-era Bowie and dashes of Pink Floyd and Yes. It’s gentle, poetic, storytelling folk-prog that’s a perfect introduction to the ToC’s new album ‘England’s Wyrding’. Stellar (sorry).
Review by Alex Holmes