When I'm down in Brighton I seem to have a knack of meeting local musicians and picking up some interesting music – Jane Bom-Bane, Nick Pynn, Jacob's Stories, Carly Bryant, Paul Harrison – to name but a few. It was therefore of no surprise to come across Jacob's Stories whilst browsing in a bookshop.
I was in Brighton Books in North Laine, next door to Iydea (an excellent place to eat and a BookCrossing zone) and asked the man what was the music he was playing.
He showed me the sleeve for Undisciplined Art by Jacob's Stories. Following his instructions I popped down to Resident an excellent independent record shop in North Laine. They knew exactly what it was I was seeking.
My pocket £10-99 lighter, a little overpriced methinks though not if one takes account of the original art, I settled down outside Iydea to eat my lunch and examine my recent purchase.
No jewel case. The CD jet black, and from the label side, though no label, looks like vinyl. The black surface of the CD does not reflect in the usual way, a deep red approaching infrared. The off-white sleeve, handmade of grass paper, has a track listing, nothing else. Inside, the CD of course, hand-scribbled notes on paper very much like that in the old days used by draughtsmen and a unique piece of art.
The album is a limited collection of 500, my copy is numbered 19.
And the music? Very haunting. The closest I could hazard a guess is the old Pentangle or possibly the Era trilogy by Eric Levi.
An earlier album can only be obtained for an arm and a leg secondhand.
Jacob's Stories is a Brighton-based band, founded by its sole member Stuart Lee.