As its title suggests, Stornoway’s 2010 debut album, ‘Beachcomber’s Windowsill’, is something of a treasure. Featuring singles ‘Fuel Up’, ‘I Saw You Blink’ and ‘Zorbing’, it showed just why so many were excited by the Oxford indie-folk quartet’s arrival - a DIY guitar band unusually rooted in folk tradition. They stood out further with their deft ability to try their hand at most instruments, never shy to experiment while their pure pop harmonies soared.
Warmly received on release, ‘Beachcomber’s Windowsill’ quickly attained Silver status in the UK and, among the many positive reviews, The Observer praised it for having a “real emotional depth that transports their music from throwaway sunny songs to something altogether more poignant and enduring,” while the NME called it “beautifully rendered and melodically magnificent; a Constable landscape of a record.”
The album is complemented by a stunning sleeve by designer Chris Bigg, who has played on the album’s title and their songs about nature by working with illustrations of shells, aquatic life and old maps. Stornoway followed up ‘Beachcomber’s Windowsill’, in 2013 with