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Number 249

The Watersons - For Pence And Spicy Ale (Topic 12TS265)

After a lengthy break, the singing family group from Hull reformed with new member Martin Carthy coming onboard as the latest 'outsider' joining siblings Mike, Norma and Lal Waterson. For Pence and Spicy Ale was such a strong album that many consider it their finest, capturing the infectious a cappella singing known to many through their live performances. I have to confess, when I first saw the group at a folk club in Rotherham, I was already a big Martin Carthy fan and all I wanted was to hear his guitar, which to my horror, was only used throughout the concert, to locate the key for each of the subsequent a cappella songs. It was only later that I came to appreciate the beauty of the group's combined vocal prowess.