Review by Bert Biscoe in Cornish World:
Mick Paynter's new CD, Kernow bys Vykken, is a masterpiece. It is delightfully weird, in the very best way. He explores themes of morality, exile, loss, excitement, past and present. He reads his work with a voice which etches itself upon the memory. It has a range of subtle qualities underpinned by a passion which engages you whether you understand his words or not (the sleeve notes are very handy!). In this sense, his CD has all the power of what we call ‘World Music’ – born of a small place but with an intensity and charm which reaches all corners of the planet.
The Moontones have made music which invades the words and rhythms of Mick poems like bones supporting muscle. The music has a meditative quality which draws you in, preparing and sustaining you for the voice of the poet calling across the plains from his inner places to the farflung listener. It also draws performances out of the poet, its rhythms awaking his innate song.
We have heard some excellent contributions to the library of Cornish recordings in recent times – ‘Let’s Party like it’s 1399’, Dalla, Jim Wearne – and now we have Kernow bys Vykken by Mick Paynter & the Moontones. For those who love exploring new sounds, probing the hearts and minds of self-effacing but passionate poetry, and who want to hear a genuinely original voice singing, growling, crying, soothing – buy this strange offering.
The last track – Bro Goth Agan Tasow – the ancient hymn – sung alone – has all the quality of a call to prayer across a Cornish desert – the voice is on the edge – you can feel Kernow at dawn, shaking off the dew, pale sun creeping into granite cracks, a glad chough on the prow – and the poet standing with his heart open and his hand raised to the world – Mick Paynter has the power to take you places while you stand still. As they say in the American Navy: ‘Now! Hear this!’
Listening to Dylan Thomas and Richard Burton each reading Under Milk Wood, you'd swear it was the actor and not the poet who had written the Welsh classic, such is Burton's treatment of each individual word, writes Simon Parker. Poets are not always the best people to read their own work - but that can't be said of Mick Paynter, whose new recording flows like honey from the spoon in a tone strangely reminiscent of Burton himself.
With a deep, melodious and highly-expressive delivery, Mick tackles 12 Cornish language poems - eight of his own - on a new CD, which includes an intriguing musical accompaniment of guitar, cuatro, keyboard, melodeon, bass clarinet, soprano saxophone and percussion.
(Western Morning News)
Yth yw bryntin, an gwella tra yn Kernewek hwath ha nyns eus Tom Bowcock!
It is brilliant, the best thing in Kernewek yet, and no Tom Bowcock.
(Pol Hodge in the Western Morning News)