Gravenhurst is the work of singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer Nick Talbot who lives in
Bristol, England. The Ghost In Daylight, his fourth full-length album for Warp Records, has been met with
overwhelming praise, resulting in the biggest UK shows so far, with two London dates selling out months
in advance and a headline slot secured for End Of The Road Festival. Strong support from BBC 6 Music
led to a live session for Lauren Laverne, and Nick’s engaging and eloquent interview style has seen him
conducting countless interviews with international press and a Guardian Music Weekly podcast, where he
chose five English songwriters for discussion with Michael Hann.
Critics have picked up on the album’s sophisticated themes of English mythology, political history and
hidden geography, with Mojo describing “a memory-haunted journey through the dead voices and deep
narratives of England’s lost - broadside ballads culled from earth and air”. Q magazine went further,
stating “Warp’s unsung genius delivers a mellow masterpiece... Nick Talbot has made an album as
good as anything his revered record label has released in the last decade...evocative of Nick Drake’s
understated English melancholia and the lush, moody atmospherics of late-70’s Brian Eno. An exquisite,
unexpected gem” . The Guardian described “terrific understated songs with a church-like serenity... Talbot
is one of music’s best kept secrets”, and The Line Of Best Fit hailed “a truly unsettling heart of darkness...
Talbot has created a uniquely potent blend of icy chill and soothing balm, and with it that rarest of things:
totally cliché-dodging songwriting”.
The first single from the album, ‘The Prize’ was released as a silver and white marbled 10” on
Record Store Day, backed with a cover of Tim Buckley’s ‘Song To The Siren’. Nick’s gift for musical
reinterpretation resulted in tracks on cover-mount tribute CDs to The Beatles for Mojo, Radiohead for
Musik Express and Michael Jackson for Rolling Stone. Live, the three-piece Gravenhurst Ensemble expands
on the eerie intimacy and cinematic ambience of the recordings to encompass haunting three part vocal
harmonies in a set that builds slowly from choral melancholy to a sustained wall of noise and drone.
A dark and atmospheric place, ever-changing and conjured from disparate ingredients, Gravenhurst’s
roots lie in the melodic noise of My Bloody Valentine, the lush vocal harmonies of Simon and Garfunkel,
the alchemical guitars of Richard Thompson and Johnny Marr, and the widescreen ambient visions of
Brian Eno. Over the course of six startling releases, Talbot has developed and retained a unique identity
across multiple genres. The Ghost In Daylight is his most sonically diverse work yet, with starkly acoustic
songs resting alongside densely layered pieces constructed from mellotrons, optigans and antique
“I like the idea of listening to Gravenhurst as being to some degree an active rather than passive
experience. The songs offer clues and form maps to a place that is partly given, and partly open to the
listener to construct as they wish.” Talbot’s haunting and powerful voice, virtuoso guitar work, ethereal
production and mysterious lyrical themes ensure that Gravenhurst is a consistent yet ever evolving sound-
world, and one with a particularly fanatical cult following.
While Nick began performing solo, singing and fingerpicking a guitar, the addition of other Bristol
musicians propelled Gravenhurst into a powerful live band, touring extensively across Europe, and the
USA, both as a headline act and as support to bands including Broadcast, Belle & Sebastian, Explosions
In The Sky and Animal Collective. In 2010 Nick supported Paul Smith (Maximo Park) touring the UK
and Europe, performing solo with guitar and various drone-making electrical devices, showcasing new
material alongside old favourites. The release of The Ghost In Daylight sees the formation of a new three-
piece Gravenhurst Ensemble, featuring Rachel Lancaster on vocals, bass guitar and keyboards, and Claire
Adams on vocals and percussion.
Nick’s blackly satirical comic book ‘Ultraskull’ and his blog ‘The Police Diver’s Notebook’ provide an
outlet for his dark humour, coruscating prose and articulate cultural and political commentary. In contrast
to Nick’s extra-musical profile, the hermetic world of Gravenhurst, carved from a language of signals and
signs, occupies its own space and time, enigmatic and immune, an invitation to the curious.