One would be forgiven when first listening to this album for thinking that it was recorded in some religious shrine away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

I mean, who else but a group of pilgrims in search of enlightenment would use such simple and tranquil sounds akin to Stars of the Lid and Broken Social Scene, most notably the meditative Singing Bowl, to express themselves? Not saying that pilgrimages of this nature are unworthy, but it seems that this Oxford based outfit haven’t needed to leave their pad to achieve this where Hugo Manuel’s band is working towards sharing their message with the world.

The mix of instruments used on this album has been carefully gathered to form a fine artillery of clocks, melodicas, glockenspiels, reed organs, dulcimers and penny whistles, all getting their five minutes of fame. The resulting sound could have been messy, but these guys have been spot-on in producing a beautiful collection of what can only be described as modern acoustic hymns with their ancient roots clearly on display. This probably doesn’t make much sense, but then, neither does ‘Sunny Casinos’. There is no need to try and make sense of it. Just listen, breathe it in, and meditate on how beautiful life can be.

Jonquil provide the same refreshment that you’d find in drinking from a fresh mountain spring - the music clears your head, while simultaneously invoking an explosion of raw energy - mind-blowing new music and medicine for the soul.

- Gary Sims



"Sunny Casinos"

1. Avignon
2. There is no Ian Bridgwater
3. Alhambra
4. You're Not My Mind
5. Too Late
6. Square Rigger
7. Sunny Casinos
8. Tracing
9. Woodstock
10. Full of Grace's Bitterness

CD album in gatefold sleeve
1st 45 copies came in a hessian sleeve