Tag Archives: cd

Canny Fettle – Still Gannin’ Canny

This is the kind of folk music I grew up with and for which I have an enormous lasting affection. There’s a simplicity and timelessness that never gets stale. It’s the band’s first album in 30 years and it’s just as fresh as ever, with that comfortable feeling that comes from working with people you know well.

Here’s the review I wrote for folking.com.

CANNY FETTLE – Still Gannin’ Canny (Canny Fettle Records CANNYCD001)

The Brothers Briggs – a review

Starting off life as a birthday present project for their dad, the three brothers Briggs ended up producing an extraordinary self-titled album. Coming across like the lost soundtrack to a folk horror film, the album’s quirky oddness is what makes it special.

I wrote this review for folking.com.

THE BROTHERS BRIGGS – The Brothers Briggs (All Made Up Records, AMU0010)

Kate & Raphaël – Les Objets Trouvés


Kate Young and Raphaël Decoster are both visual artists and accomplished musicians. So, naturally, any collaboration between them was going to be a thrilling proposition. This album really doesn’t disappoint.

Here’s the review I wrote for folking.com.

KATE & RAPHAËL – Les Objets Trouvés (own label DECYOU01)

And an extensive quote from my review was used by Birnam PR in the publicity material for the album.

Kate and Raphael album cover image

The Unthanks – Diversions 4: The Songs & Poems of Molly Drake / Extras

I’ve been a fan of The Unthanks for a long time. Actually, that’s not the whole truth. When I first heard them, I didn’t like them much at all. It took me a while to appreciate what they were doing and just how original they were. There’s a strange tension with them, always, between a real earthy groundedness and an otherworldly ethereality.

As Nick Drake fans already, Becky and Rachel came across his mother, Molly’s collection of her works, published in 2012. These songs and poems hadn’t been recorded with the intention of any public release, so the sound quality isn’t always the best. But there’s a truthfulness and poeticism in the best of them that touches an emotional chord. Sometimes, they seem a bit dated or whimsical, but they always have an honesty that salvages them from tweeness.

In the capable hands of The Unthanks, these songs are given another lease of life again. Read the review I wrote for folking.com.

THE UNTHANKS – Diversions Volume 4: The Songs And Poems Of Molly Drake / Extras (RabbleRouser Music RRM016/RRM017)

Emily Maguire – A Bit Of Blue

It was really hard to write this review without a sort of generic 1970s northern comedian’s voice coming into my head “A bit of blue, there, for t’dads” –  a catch-all comment to follow any mildly adult joke.

I can only apologise to Ms Maguire for this, especially as it’s a rather lovely album. And here’s my review of it for folking.com.

EMILY MAGUIRE – A Bit Of Blue (Shaktu Records, SHK2105)