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CD Reviews

John Forrester - Restless (Irregular Records)

A rather engaging little album of reflective songs, written and performed seemingly from the heart after certain unexpected personal events. In essence, songs grown organically from the relatively simple and at the same time complex rhythm of life. (AW)

Star rating: 
3

Darling West - While I Was Asleep (Jansen Records)

Norweigian Americana in the shape of Oslo-based Darling West, whose accessible music touches on Union Station territory, with fine performances from Mari, Tor and Kjetil, on this the trio's third album release. At times, Mari Kreken's voice comes very close to that of Alison Krauss. (AW)

Star rating: 
4

Frander - Frander (Mad King)

A breath of fresh Estonian and Swedish air in nine songs, as Natasja, Sade, Gabbi and Daniel delight us with their own distinctive brand of acoustic folk. As their name suggests, they're currently making friends around the world and judging by the music on their debut album, it's no surprise. (AW)

Star rating: 
4

Ninebarrow - The Waters & The Wild (Winding Track)

To say Ninebarrow is something of a cottage industry is to underestimate them. Whether it's selling CDs, songbooks, t-shirts or greeting cards, their website reveals them to be busy bees. Whilst, of course, good commercial sense is no indication of the quality of their music, positive comments...

Jim and Jesse - Diesel on My Tail (Floating World Records)

Re-issue of Jim and Jesse's fuelled-up 1967 album featuring some vintage yet fresh truck songs from the Virginian Bluegrass siblings, including Six Days on the Road, Truck Driving Man and other roadworthy tunes, such as Ballad of Thunder Road, co-written by Robert Mitchum. (AW)

Star rating: 
3

Keith James - Captured (Hurdy Gurdy)

For many years now, Keith James has been regarded as a leading interpreter of the songs of Nick Drake, Leonard Cohen and John Martyn, together with selected poetical works of Dylan Thomas, William Blake and Federico García Lorca, to name but a few. Although there might be a question mark over why...

Torgeir Waldemar - Jamais Vu (Jansen Records)

With each of the five lengthy tracks indicating they are either acoustic or electric, we feel suitably warned, especially as the Neil Young-like rockers take flight. So Young-like, that the opener Sylvia has more Southern Man references than Lynyrd Skynyrd could shake a stick at. Interesting. (AW)

Star rating: 
3

Cua - Songs of the Hollow (Self Release)

Tight three voice harmonies as rich and sharp as anything that came out of Laurel Canyon CSN, razor sharp instrumental folk music that manages to be part Celtic, part Balkan and part Hot Quintet of The Hot Club Of Paris. Unaccompanied singing with the vim and social comment of Coope Boyes and...

Anne-Marie Sanderson - Book Songs Volume 1 (Self Release)

Anne-Marie Sanderson's third EP release is inspired by a handful of books the singer has devoured over time, books like Ian McEwan's Sweet Tooth , Barbara Kingsolver's The Poisonwood Bible and Sarah Hall's Haweswater for instance. Celebrating literature in such a symbiotic way is quite novel (no...

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