You are here

CD Reviews

Afro Celt Sound System - Flight (ECC Records)

ALBUM OF THE MONTH (December 2018) If ever a band was to use a name that perfectly described what was in the tin, then the Afro Celt Sound System would be it. From the outset on this, the collective's latest album release, Griogair Labhruidh sets out their stall with a fine reading of Marbhrannn do...

Star rating: 
5

Callum Wood - She Wynds On Magic (Park Records)

Calum Wood is a composer, singer and guitarist from the North East of Scotland. She Wynds On was commissioned by Visit Cairngorms with the aim of promoting a new route called the Snow Roads through the Cairngorms. Kind of like the Golden Age of Steam railway companies promoting locations to...

Star rating: 
3

Townes Van Zandt - Down Home and Abroad (Floating World)

These two live shows, recorded almost a decade apart, feature a selection of Townes Van Zandt's finest compositions, with just four repeated songs over the two shows. The two-disc release captures the enigmatic songwriter on fine form in both 1985 and 1993, the latter just three and a half years...

Star rating: 
3

Peter Hammill - X/Ten (Fie Records)

This release is essentially a complete, yet sparsely performed live version of Peter Hammill's last album FROM THE TREES, which was released in 2017. The songs are in the same running order, each performed on either acoustic guitar or piano and lifted from European shows recorded between November...

Star rating: 
3

Cam Penner - At War With Reason (Self Release)

Cam Penner has a soulful voice, shot with character. On Gather Round his chorus of 'come on people' is part Games Without Frontiers Peter Gabriel, part Curtis Mayfield. Delivered over a captivating soundscape of electronics and strummed guitar chords. Eastside continues the grainy, intense,...

Star rating: 
5

Moonlight Benjamin - Siltane (Ma Case)

A surprisingly adrenaline-soaked rocker of an album this, the opening track of which immediately alerts us to the energy-packed Voodoo inspired goodies to follow, as Haitian singer Moonlight Benjamin attacks each song with unmitigated authority. Much of the album is delivered in Creole, Haiti's...

Star rating: 
4

Me and My Friends - Look Up (Split Shift Records)

With shades of Penguin Cafe Orchestra in places, notably on the instrumental title track Look Up , and with a wealth of Sade-like vocal inflections, Me and My Friends' third album release seems to ooze joy from the start, with an infectious album opener Another Lifetime. The UK-based outfit, namely...

Star rating: 
5

Dawda Jobarteh - I Met Her by the River (Sterns Music)

There's always something immediately warm and soothing about the kora, and Dawda Jobarteh's new release is indeed no exception. The instrument is enough in itself, especially in the hands of such a remarkable musician, yet when placed amongst other instruments it truly comes alive. I doubt there's...

Star rating: 
5

The Willows - Through the Wild (Elk Records)

It's difficult to put your finger precisely on what exactly constitutes The Willows' trump card, it could be any of a dozen things. Perhaps it's their excellent choice of material or maybe it's the cohesive nature of their arrangements. It could be the clever interplay between Ben Savage's informed...

Star rating: 
5

John Meed - Never Enough (Self Release)

The widely travelled John Meed delivers each of his songs in an uncomplicated and unpretentious singing voice, removed only slightly from an actual speaking voice, perfect for the sort of poetic songs he writes. On this, his seventh album release, the Manchester-born, now Cambridge-based singer...

Star rating: 
4

Pages