Jon Langford and Skull Orchard
Jon Langford is best known for the music he creates with the Mekons and the Waco Brothers, but he’s also gained increasing acclaim for his visual art over the past decade. Nashville Radio, his first book + CD of paintings, writing, and music (Verse Chorus Press, 2005) was a sprawling, jam-packed collection full of punk energy. For this book, Langford has created a highly personal portrait of Wales, where he was born and raised.
The starting point was his long unobtainable album Skull Orchard. For the CD available exclusively with this book, Langford returned to those lost recordings and radically revised them, enlisting as his accomplices the Burlington Welsh Male Chorus, who contribute a unique warmth to the material. Three new tracks have been added, making 18 in all.
Langford illustrated his lyrics for Skull Orchard, at once autobiographical and fanciful, in a set of “song paintings” created especially for this book, which also includes much more artwork, an A to Z of South Walian culture and history (both personal and general) by Jon’s brother, and acclaimed science fiction writer David Langford, photographs by their father, Denis Langford, and Jon’s first published story, a witty, dystopian tale about a whale and a dolphin.