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CD Reviews

Emma Black - Swimming in the Moon (Cornflower Records)

This second studio album release by singer-songwriter Emma Black features 13 original songs that explore matters of the heart, whilst raising a vivid awareness of the issues in the world around us. Following her 2007 debut WHERE DARK HORSES ROAM and the digital only release CROSSROAD RADIO SESSION...

Star rating: 
4

Loudon Wainwright III - Older Than My Old Man Now (Proper)

The question of how we managed to get to the 'here and now' is all the more prevalent to late Sixties musicians who challenged their bodies to excesses beyond our imagination. Loudon Wainwright III was one of Bob Dylan's 'dumb ass kid brothers' who survived that particular period, whilst the likes...

Star rating: 
4

Cactus Blossoms - The Cactus Blossoms (Self Release)

Some fine retro honky-tonking country in the spirit of Hank Williams, from brothers Jack Torrey and Page Burkum, both effectively fronting the Cactus Blossoms. Joined by veteran Minneapolis musicians Mike 'Razz' Russell on fiddle and Randy Broughton on guitar, the boys young and not so young are...

Star rating: 
3

Paul Brady - Dancer in the Fire (Proper)

For anyone coming to the music of Paul Brady in the mid-eighties, especially anyone with a fondness for traditional music, the defection to pop music sort of mirrored albeit to a lesser extent, a similar attitude towards Dylan's 'electric' phase at Newport, which was subsequently symbolised in the...

Star rating: 
3

Bonnie Raitt - Slipstream (Proper)

It's hard to believe that Bonnie Raitt has been making records for over forty years now and with the release of this her nineteenth album, it equates to one every couple of years on average. It's actually seven years since the last Raitt album SOULS ALIKE and on SLIPSTREAM the singer/guitarist...

Star rating: 
4

Jess Morgan - Aye Me (Self Release)

Jess Morgan's second full-length solo album and follow up to her excellent 2010 debut ALL SWELL, once again showcases one of the most unique voices on the acoustic music scene today. The Norwich-based singer-songwriter has two tricks up her sleeve; firstly her remarkably emotive yet slightly...

Star rating: 
4

Jim Moray - Skulk (NIAG)

With this his fifth album to date, Jim Moray continues to impress with his skilful command over transforming old songs into something contemporary with highly interesting results. Strangely, there's always a sense of surprise at just how good Moray's albums are, yet we should be used to it by now...

Star rating: 
4

Zoe Muth and the Lost High Rollers - Starlight Hotel (Signature Sounds)

For a young singer-songwriter growing up in the Grunge capitol of 1980s Seattle, the Country Music bug came early to Zoe Muth, by way of an early interest in the ideals of Woody Guthrie, Leadbelly and The Carter Family but with the vocal delivery of something closer to the likes of Loretta Lynn and...

Star rating: 
3

Rebecca De Winter - And Other Tales (Self Release)

If you thought for a moment that one of Daphne Du Maurier's leading characters had popped out from one of the writer's classic novels to take up a singing career then you'd be half right. Taking the name of Du Maurier's eponymous heroine, this Bedford-born singer-songwriter presents eleven original...

Star rating: 
3

Idle Hands - Ready For Business (Bone Idle)

A generous sixteen track album packed with original blues numbers from four-piece Chesterfield-based outfit Idle Hands. Although this band boasts the classic band format of guitar, bass, drums and harp, there's a diverse range of styles involved, incorporating quite a lot of acoustic guitar,...

Star rating: 
3

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