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CD Reviews

Kate Rusby - Angels and Men (Pure Records)

The wings are out for Christmas as Barnsley's favourite daughter pops down from the top of the tree to celebrate the festive season in song. Surrounding herself with members of her own touring band, including husband Damien O'Kane and accordion player Nick Cooke, both of whom also take care of...

John Hassell - Dream Theory in Malaya (Glitterbeat)

To listen to a reissue of Jon Hassell's seminal 1981 DREAM THEORY IN MALAYA album is to realise how fine it sounds, how little it has dated and how much it sounds like music that was to come after it. The strange mystical blown tones of Hassells compressed, pitch shifted and layered trumpet inhabit...

Molly Evans - Deep Time and Narrow Space (Self Release)

Let's start with the most important part of a good review: this EP is spectacularly good. Go and buy a copy now. Done that? Okay, good. Now we can start talking about it… and that might start to get complex…. because much like the oral folk tradition, or Chinese whispers, or the Hollywood...

Greg Russell - Inclined to be Red (Fellside Records)

A hugely enjoyable collection from Greg Russell, who many of you may know from his outings with playing partner Ciaran Algar, collaborators, The Transports and the Shake The Chains Project. Starting with a track from the latter, telling of Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, the UK's first female doctor...

Blue Rose Code - The Water of Leith (Navigator)

After four studio albums and two concert sets of perfection, where Ross Wilson's burred soulful vocals glide skip and slide over sublime music, offering a personal vision of a world that is emotionally charged and exploding with physical and metaphysical beauty. It is frankly a mystery why Blue...

Brother Roy - Last Man Standing (Self Release)

It's rewarding to hear a record so chock full of songs rich in melody, with lush orchestrations, maturely written lyrics and embellished with the sound of a sweet Hammond organ, occasionally swirling along in the mix as if it was 1965 again. Heartbreaker , the opening song, ticks the same boxes...

Edgelarks - Edgelarks (Dragonfly Records)

Standing back to back on the sleeve of their latest album, Phillip Henry and Hannah Martin enchant before a single note is played. Birds circle the margins as the duo's newly adopted name suggests, serving as an eloquent introduction to the twelve songs included within, which enchant equally...

Hadrian's Union - Aural Borderalis (Self Release)

Strange place Cumbria. Not quite Scotland and it's shared Caledonian identity, yet too far from England's cultural epicentres to be dragged into any passing mode du jour. A place then where they do things their own way, at least if Hadrian's Union are anything to go by. Yes, they do make their own...

Pons Aelius - Captain Glen's Comfort (Self Release)

The North East music scene has produced some fine folk outfits over the years from Lindisfarne to The Unthanks, Jez Lowe and the Bad Pennies to the Young'uns. In 2015, the traditional sextet Pons Aelius, named after the Newcastle Roman fort, were the deserved recipients of the Celtic Connections...

Meridian Brothers - ¿Dónde Estás María? (Soundway)

Beginning life as a one-man conceptual project in the late nineties, Meridian Brothers has developed into a constantly imaginative and exciting live quintet. For ¿DÓNDE ESTÁS MARÍA?, founder Elibis Alvarez returns to the studio to cook up ten infectiously lively and eccentric tracks that propel...

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