Reviews / Sea Songs And Shanties – Duck Pond Sailors

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Categories: Music | Reviews

Describing themselves as, “a group of lads that learn and sing traditional sea shanties… and have no aim other than singing well and drinking better”, Duck Pond Sailors have come up with a debut 8-track collection that suggests a true love of singing rather than imbibing….it is rather good. All tracks, with the exception of the… Read more »

Reviews / A Window To Other Ways – Marry Waterson and Emily Barker

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Categories: Music | Reviews

Creativity and commerciality are strange bedfellows. Whilst audiences often clamour for more of what they’ve heard in the past, artists are more inclined to look for those sparks of creativity that produce something new. It was such a search that led Marry Waterson and Emily Barker to work together at a songwriting retreat organised by… Read more »

Reviews / The Reckoning, Deluxe Reissue – John Tams

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john tams

Arguably one of the most quietly effective and successful musicians to come out of the folk revival John Tams remains a man who deals in gritty authenticity not the bucolic cosiness which can often descend when talking about endemic music. Getting as close as any to a truly English rock form, first by pushing the… Read more »

Reviews / An Introduction To – Nic Jones

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Categories: Music | Reviews

nic jones

Given to a cavalier spirit and modus operandi that few folk singers could match in the 70s Nic Jones was undoubtedly at the peak of his powers when he recorded the tracks which populate this entry in the long running Topic series reappraising their significant artists. It was his open guitar tunings which made him… Read more »

Reviews / Call To Mind – Finn Collinson

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finn collinson

From the Latin ‘recordari’ meaning to recall or call to mind gives this debut album by Finn Collinson its title. Recorder is one instrument I feel amply qualified to write about having reached a certain standard at junior school! My rendition of ‘Streets of Laredo’ has to be heard to be believed. Mixing traditional and… Read more »

Reviews / Ear Worms – Duke Robillard

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Duke Robillard

A two time Grammy nominee, a career spanning 50 or so years, Duke is a master of the blues, but as this trawl through his back pages displays he is a multi-faceted player who can traverse many styles. No surprise really for a guy who has recorded with the likes of Bob Dylan, Tom Waits… Read more »

Reviews / Southern Avenue – Keep On

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Categories: Music | Reviews

second avenue

After the rapturous reception that was afforded their 2017 debut we are treated to another helping of southern fried soul by this young quintet from Memphis. Here the band continue their journey through the past recalling the heady days of the Stax label with a fusion of soul, blues and R & B that may… Read more »

Reviews / Pat Todd & the Rank Outsiders – The Past Came Calling

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pat todd

Fifth album from this LA based combo who fall somewhere between Chuck Berry and the Ramones this is rock’n’roll meant to be experienced in a hot sweaty club with a beer in hand. You kinda know what to expect from these guys from the get go. The US punk scene spawned a host of bands… Read more »

Reviews / Grace Morrison – Reasons

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Categories: Music | Reviews

grace morrison

Grace Morrison began as a backup singer for rock icons like Eddie Money and Joey Mollard (of the band Badfinger) became a regular on the USA festival circuit. She has won many awards and nominations and the Big Break contest where her music video was played on the season finale of American Idol. This new release ‘Reasons’… Read more »

Reviews / FolkEast 2019 Review: Something On Offer For Everyone

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Categories: Festivals | Reviews

richard thompson at folk east

Back in 2017, reviewing FolkEast for Spiral Earth, I said the festival was “muscling its way through the crowds to become one of the most enjoyable folk music festivals of the summer”. The Guardian has also said that “FolkEast feels more like a very English village fete than a festival”. So, what happened in 2019?… Read more »