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CD Reviews

Kate Rusby - Make the Light (Pure Records)

Kate Rusby's ninth solo album is made up entirely of self-penned material, an idea apparently suggested by Jennifer Saunders. Kate's exemplary track record as an interpreter of traditional songs is well documented, so too is her remarkable aptitude for recognising a good contemporary song when she...

Star rating: 
4

Jaywalkers - 16 Miles (Self Release)

When Jaywalkers' debut album dropped onto the doormat in December, I did what I usually do, that is to discard the press release, ignore the cover artwork, although it was difficult in this case to avoid being charmed by the two pairs of legs dangling nonchalantly from the top of the brick wall on...

Star rating: 
4

Gilbert O'Sullivan - Gilbertville (Hypertension)

Utter the name Gilbert O'Sullivan to the nearest human being and it's highly probable that they will respond with one of a handful of customary retorts. They may mention his cloth cap, that song about getting married or something about Bonaparte Shandy. The comedians amongst them will, no doubt,...

The Secret Sisters - The Secret Sisters (Beladroit/Universal Republic)

Recorded over a two week period in Nashville's Blackbird Studios and released on T Bone Burnett's newly created Beladroit Records label, the Secret Sisters' self-titled debut is out to ensure these siblings don't remain a secret for much longer. Hailing from Muscle Shoals, Alabama, Laura and Lydia...

Star rating: 
4

JT and the Clouds - Caledonia (Dishrag)

This feast of soulful pop from Chicago based inde band JT and the Clouds arrives just in time to coincide with their forthcoming UK tour in February 2011. At times reminiscent of Little Feat's Time Loves a Hero period, particularly on How It Runs , with its soul-fuelled exchanges between funky...

Star rating: 
4

Joan Armatrading - Live at the Royal Albert Hall (Hypertension)

The latest release from three times Grammy nominated singer-songwriter Joan Armatrading comes as a handsomely packaged three disc set celebrating her appearance at the Royal Albert Hall in April 2010. The double CD with accompanying DVD showcases some of Armatrading's best known songs together with...

Star rating: 
3

Anthea Neads - Jars of Clay (Rowan Leaf)

The debut album from Anthea Neads features ten songs, some of which replace songs originally planned for the album two years ago, discarded in favour of newer and more appropriate material. Evocative, contemplative and reflective, the songs follow a personal journey of self discovery, presented in...

Star rating: 
4

Miss Quincy - Your Mama Don't Like Me (Self Release)

Recorded in a log cabin amidst below zero temperatures up in Northern British Columbia, Miss Quincy's debut solo album reaches this reviewer in similar conditions, albeit the comparatively kinder snowy terrain of a seasonal South Yorkshire. The warmth created in the studio, aided by liberal...

Star rating: 
4

Eddie Martin - Folk & Blues (Blue Blood Records)

Eddie Martin is no stranger to either folk or blues and delivers a dozen new selections on this his eleventh album to date. With a sort of 'have National Resophonic guitar, blues harp, bass drum and dog, will travel' attitude, Eddie continues the traditional lineage of British blues players...

Star rating: 
3

Emily Smith - Traiveller's Joy (White Fall)

As an accomplished singer, Emily Smith is up there with the likes of Cara Dillon, Julie Fowlis and Heidi Talbot without question. Added to this, her credentials as a fine songwriter and interpreter of traditional and contemporary songs, one wonders why her star has taken so long to rise. The Scots...

Star rating: 
4

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