Reviews / Painted Lady – Jon Boden

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Jon Boden

Painted Lady is an expanded version of Boden’s first ever solo album, first released in 2006. The reissue comes  hard upon the heels of the final performance of folk phenomenon Bellowhead, a band in which Boden served as frontman for the last twelve years. Like most people I know, I thought Bellowhead were pretty darn… Read more »

Reviews / The James Brothers – The James Brothers

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the james brothers

Two of them, they aren’t called brothers and one isn’t called James, but Jamie’s close enough for jazz. Delightfully tongue in cheek but at the same time serious in their music, James Fagan and Jamie McClennan, (other halves of Nancy Kerr and Emily Smith,) share not only a southern hemisphere start in life but rootsy… Read more »

Reviews / Tree – Anna Elizabeth Laube

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tree anna elizabeth laube

American singer, songwriter and producer Anna Elizabeth Laube’s fourth album ‘Tree’ features mainly self-penned tracks along with covers of Bob Dylan’s ‘Wallflower’ and Beyonce’s ‘XO’. Laube’s voice is beautiful and the gentle, bluegrassy, old-timey sound she creates is truly lovely. She completely nails the music bit. I was all geared up to love this album… Read more »

Reviews / O Groth y Ddaear – Gwilym Bowen Rhys

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gwilym bowen rhys

There is often a Welsh gap on the folk scene amongst the myriad Irish, Scottish and English bands so I confess that when it comes to Welsh trad, my sole knowledge comes from beautiful songs by a few wonderful floor singers I’ve chanced upon on my travels. I was really interested therefore in ‘O Groth… Read more »

Reviews / Hubert Murray – Shorten the Road

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hubert murray

‘Shorten the Road’ is a six track EP by Galway folk, blues and bluegrass artist Hubert Murray and it’s great. All tracks are composed by Murray himself, from the upbeat, country-sounding composition ‘Will You Love Me Again?’ to the bluesy, toe-tapping ‘Slapstick’ and there’s not a bad song in the batch. London-based Murray is an… Read more »

Reviews / Hark! The Headland Approacheth – Seas Of Mirth

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seas of mirth

I really try and avoid talking influences, or trotting out that hideous sentence that kicks off with ‘sounds like…’ and ends in a lazy association with some band or other, however… Any band that considers they should be described as having a melting pot of ideas and influences would do well to listen to Seas of… Read more »

Reviews / The Bottle Bank Band – the Bottle Bank Band

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bottle bank band

Tyneside fiddle quartet The Bottle Bank Band’s eponymous debut album demonstrates that this band is a bit of a festival’s dream.  Members Sophy Ball, Chloe Jones, David Jones and Stewart Hardy are the only performers on the album and include no guest musicians giving you a true and authentic flavour of who they are and… Read more »

Reviews / Red Diesel – Pilgrims’ Way

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pilgrims way red diesel

Red Diesel, isn’t that the stuff farmers use to power up tractors? Not as refined as some fuels if I understand correctly. If that’s the case there couldn’t be a more apt title for Pilgrims’ Way and their second album – somewhat overdue. Powerful, rough round the edges, like tractors large and made to go… Read more »

Reviews / Life in a Paper Boat – Kate Rusby

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life in a paper boat

Should Kate Rusby be regarded as a national treasure? Life in a Paper Boat is her fourteenth studio album and marks twenty four years on the road. In itself that probably doesn’t warrant the National Treasure tag, but surely her unfailing ability to be consistently brilliant makes her a contender? Then there is her string… Read more »

Reviews / The Longing Kind – Maz O’Connor

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Max O'Connor

The perfect match of a sympathetic, visionary producer and eager, artist on the rise. The pairing of Maz O’Connor with Jim Moray has created an atmospheric collection of originals – sorry no traditional here though her writing is shot through with folkist references and supporting structures. Quite remarkable too the way O’Connor has sculptured singular… Read more »