Devon-based 90s three-piece reunited

Who they? 

Mark Brend, Matt Gale and Cliff Glanfield formed Fariña in 1995, gaining acclaim for their albums ‘Three People’ and ‘Allotments’; epic collections of filmic, bittersweet chamber pop redolent of peak-era Scott Walker and Ennio Morricone. There were, quite frankly, trumpets. After splitting in the 00s, the trio have reunited to record a soundtrack EP to Brend’s debut novel ‘Undercliff’, a gently beguiling tale set amid the post-hippy fall-out of 1972, in which a listless divorcee finds himself drawn into the world of sinister religious cult The Olive Grove. 

Why Fariña?

“It means ‘flour’ in Spanish, I believe,” says Brend. “We just liked the sound of the word.” Unlike their two albums, ‘The Undercliff Suite’ is entirely instrumental, with a more experimental, post-rock feel, perhaps suggesting a bold new direction for a band who seem warmly receptive to longer-term collaborations. “Reforming Fariña just seemed like a natural, logical step,” he adds. “I don’t recall us even discussing it that much. We just started writing together and it was if the intervening years hadn’t happened.” 

Tell us more…

“The music is an attempt to capture the atmosphere of aspects of the book, rather than soundtrack them in a literal sense,” Brend is keen to stress. Appropriate then, that the EP is quietly unsettling, with soothing, jazz-tinged brass and folk-club accordion floating elegantly across beds of vintage synths provided, perhaps predictably, by Brend. And it culminates in the beautiful, hymn-like ‘Resurgam’, evoking images of Sir Hubert Parry let loose upon a microKORG.

‘The Undercliff Suite’ is released by Hanky Panky

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