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Here Come The Knights (Reprise)

Stuart Bailie | 15:59 UK time, Monday, 8 March 2010

For the first part of their career, The Lowly Knights were beaming and happily perturbed that the world had grown to love them so well and so quickly. One moment they were ambling onto the small stages of Belfast, stomping and enthusing and looking like an act that was doing it purely for the rite of expression. Next thing, Duke Special was writing a song about them, Gary Lightbody was blogging with gusto and they were onstage at the Odyssey Arena, still looking like they were part of a parallel world where people got their dues for being proper and true.

It was fun to see a dozen people onstage, dodging the cello bow and hammering at xylophones and stuff. It was a little like the Toronto ensemble Broken Social Scene in that there were many talents passing through and that a scene was in joyous motion before our eyes. But I guess that we had already accepted that in practical terms, the Knights were going to either remain the keen amateurs or else trim a few sails.

So their new Hollow EP is evidence of that process. Their profile was willfully lessened over 2009, new songs have been fetched up and an actual career can be imagined. But still we hear all the voices and the clapping and the rapture. This may be a little less expansive, but the evidence is that the songs are bold and sweetly arranged and yes, the charm may be unharmed. I'll be playing a few of the tunes tonight.

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