Band photo from 2010
|Genres||Folk, acoustic, instrumental, minimalist, dance|
|Labels||Real World Records|
|Members||Jane Harbour, Alex Vann, Jason Sparkes, Jon Hunt|
Spiro is an instrumental musical group based in Bristol, England. They emerged from the Bristol session scene in 1993, first playing with each other (and others) at The Robin Hood public house, on St. Michael's Hill, in regular open sessions run by landlord and landlady, Simon and Sally Pyner, and settling on a line-up which remains unchanged to this day. They released two albums (Wasp With Horn, 1993 and Lost in Fishponds, 1994, both initially on cassette only, the latter also being released on CD later) under the name The Famous Five.
Their first album under the name Spiro, Pole Star (1997), saw a development of their interest in fusing minimalist classical influences with the traditional music of the North of England. In 2009 they signed to UK label Real World Records, since when they have released two albums, Lightbox (2009) and Kaleidophonica (2012) as well as a mini-album, The Vapourer (2013), with live recordings by the group and Moog versions of two of their compositions by Portishead's Adrian Utley. The latest album, "Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow", was issued in mid-2015 and the group toured to promote it, receiving a rapturous welcome in their home town of Bristol on 31 May, 2015.
(Note that occasional reports that the group was formed at The Richmond Springs public house in Clifton are incorrect.)
- Jane Harbour (violin, viola)
- Alex Vann (mandolin)
- Jason Sparkes (accordion)
- Jon Hunt (acoustic guitar, cello)
- Wasp With Horn (recorded as 'The Famous Five') (privately-released cassette, 1993)
- Lost in Fishponds (recorded as 'The Famous Five') (privately-released cassette, 1994)
- Lost in Fishponds (recorded as 'The Famous Five') (updated version of previously cassette-only release, Uncle, 1994)
- Pole Star (Uncle, 1997)
- Lightbox (Real World Records, 2009)
- Kaleidophonica (Real World Records, 2012)
- The Vapourer (with Adrian Utley, Real World Records, 2013)
- Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow (Real World Records, 2015)
- Tassell, Nigel. Spiro. spiromusic.com/about.html. Accessed 2009-10-17.
- Spiro. Real World Records website. Accessed 2009-10-17.
- Spiro WOMAD website. Accessed 2009-10-17.
- Spiro on Myspace. Accessed 2009-10-17.
- Review of Lightbox by Robin Denselow. The Guardian, 19 June 2009.
- Review of Kaleidophonica by Colin Irwin. BBC website, 2012.
- Review of Kaleidophonica by Robin Denselow. The Guardian, 16 February 2012.
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