Words by Julian May
Leveret are a squeezebox trio: Sam Sweeney on fiddle and viola; Rob Harbron on English concertina; and Andy Cutting on diatonic button accordions and melodeon. They know each other well, having played with Fay Hield & the Hurricane Party. They found that what each one of them really loved was playing folk tunes, so they got together as an instrumental group.
They share a repertoire of traditional tunes, such as ‘Glorishears’, a glorious morris dance tune, and ‘Anything New’, sourced from old tune books. There are also several of their own here, such as Cutting’s ‘Milford’, inspired by a village in Derbyshire, Harbron’s ‘Cossack Square’ and Sweeney’s ‘Gallons of Cognac’. Leveret do not create arrangements; they just play the tunes, listening and responding to each other. Anything New was recorded live, in one day. If they did it again, it would be different, because no performance is alike. So the process of music making is akin to jazz, although Leveret create something more like Baroque music, intricate patterns that interweave with a certain inevitability and yet elusiveness, so that at the end of the tune one can’t always quite grasp the melody. It is strikingly beautiful.