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CD Reviews

Katherine Hurdley and Alex Percy - First Red Rose (Willowbrook Records)

Following their individual successes in the Sheffield-based outfit The QP and the Celtic quartet The Long Notes respectively, Katherine Hurdley and Alex Percy release their debut EP as a duo, featuring four songs inspired or collected from their native counties of Leicestershire and Dorset. With...

Star rating: 
3

Ewan McLennan - The Last Bird to Sing (Fellside)

Ewan McLennan returns with this his second album on Fellside, THE LAST BIRD TO SING, the title of which refers to one of the three McLennan originals included. Once again McLennan explores traditional Scottish ballads such as the transportation song Jamie Raeburn and the melancholic Lichtbob's...

Star rating: 
4

Rebekah Findlay - Improvising Around the Sun (Ted Records)

This excellent follow up to Rebekah Findlay's 2010 debut NORTHERN SKIES once again clearly demonstrates Rebekah's command over song writing with seven original songs and one instrumental, together with a new arrangement of a well-known traditional song and a couple of covers, including a pop song...

Star rating: 
3

Wing and Hollow - North of Nowhere (Self Release)

This new EP by Los Angeles-based Wing and Hollow confirms what we already know about Haven and Jill Lamoureux, that they have a certain flair in the craft of songs making and they really should be known and appreciated by a wider audience. Once again the five songs included here have a haunting...

Star rating: 
3

Duncan McCrone - Colourblind (Circular)

The thirteen songs on Duncan McClone's latest album COLOURBLIND, whether original or interpretations of familiar songs by other notable singer-songwriters, are treated to delicate arrangements by a singer with a thirty-five year pedigree. Crediting chief collaborator Cy Jack as a bone fide partner...

Star rating: 
3

The Old Dance School - Chasing the Light (Transition)

Described as a cinematic septet, the Birmingham-based Old Dance School returns with a superb follow up to their remarkable second album FORECAST album of 2010. Once again their blending of traditional instrumentation such as the twin fiddles of Samantha Norman and Helen Lancaster, together with the...

Star rating: 
4

Tracey Browne - Everyone is Ordinary (NABD)

Debut solo album from Manchester-based singer-songwriter Tracey Browne, proving that not everyone is ordinary despite the album title. With eleven self-penned songs, one written with producer Nigel Stonier, EVERYONE IS ORDINARY reveals a confident approach to songwriting. With a brief spell as lead...

Star rating: 
3

Rachel Hair Trio - No More Wings (March Hair Records)

For her third album release, Glasgow-based harpist and composer Rachel Hair joins forces with her trio for the first time on record. NO MORE WINGS features a selection of sophisticated instrumental arrangements blending Scotland's rich heritage of vibrant instrumental music with one or two songs...

Star rating: 
4

Fairport Convention - By Popular Request (Matty Grooves)

Released to coincide with Fairport Convention's forty-fifth anniversary year, BY POPULAR REQUEST is a collection of familiar songs from the band's vast repertoire, specially re-recorded at the request of the band's loyal fanbase after being polled by the band via email. As the emails came in and...

Star rating: 
3

Urban Folk Quartet - Off Beaten Tracks (Self Release)

Multi-influenced cross-genre music at its best, The Urban Folk Quartet stretch the boundaries further with their latest release OFF BEATEN TRACKS. Following their self-titled 2010 debut, together with a stunning limited-edition live album, their second studio album is a mixture of the two, studio...

Star rating: 
4

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