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Lutine + Bela Emerson @ St Laurence Church, Falmer


The ideal way to arrive at a Lutine gig is probably on a horse, preferably one stolen from ‘The Lochmaben Harper’ or another Child Ballad. The path to St Laurence Church is wooded and pitch black – countryside black – and I’m a little spooked and in need a sure-footed animal. It’s a path to earlier times, before the Amex stadium, before the universities, both invisible and forgotten by the time the lights of the church are first seen through the trees. [about the church] It’s perfect for Lutine, who recorded their album of original and traditional songs White Flowers here, and now launch the album with a return visit.

Outside the Church’s closed heavy oak doors are some latecomers, discussing in whispers whether to interrupt support act Bela Emerson’s performance. We can hear her Cello – spun through various loop pedals and effects, the whole stone church its sounding box – escaping under the doorway.


Manage to do it without the sugary excesses of, say, Anaïs Mitchell, or the earthy posturing of Ewan MacColl (don’t hate me, folk fans), Lutine have the purity, the sweet haunting melancholy, of Anne Briggs or Vashti Bunyon