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CD Reviews

Mike Grogan - Too Many Ghosts (Poacher Records)

TOO MANY GHOSTS is Mike Grogan's third album and his fourth release. It follows a significant gap after MAKE ME STRONG, his last album. Clearly Mike has spent the time playing and reflecting, as there is a significant shift and refinement, that much is obvious from the first moment of the first...

Top Floor Taivers - A Delicate Game (Self Release)

We seem to be getting rather used to seeing young musicians in collaboration these days, whether that be as part of a 'collective', a themed commissioned project, or more commonly as part of a good old tried and tested band. In any such format, the strength of this collaborative prowess appears to...

The Backyard Devils - Honkytonk Heartbreaker (Self Release)

From the opening few bars of Rambling it becomes immediately obvious that The Backyard Devils have a raw energy ready to share with anyone in close proximity. Twangy guitars, gravelly voices, attitude in spades and an immediate groove best served in a late night bar that stocks good whiskey. It's...

Sean Taylor - Flood and Burn (Proper)

Sean Taylor is a London based Folk Blues performer. He is a master with the guitar and has a voice that seethes with presence and power. FLOOD AND BURN is his eighth album since CORRUGATIONS in 2007, Sean is never less than very good on record, but since hooking up with Mark Hallman in Austin Texas...

Esteban Alvarez - Tico Groove (Self Release)

With his album TICO GROOVE, Costa Rican pianist Esteban Alvarez has served up an especially nourishing dish. The Steinway Artist nominee and Akademia Award-winning composer invites us in for a notably intimate performance of ten seductive instrumentals, each infused with Latin flavours that may...

Winter Mountain - I Swear I Flew (Astral Fox Records)

I SWEAR I FLEW is Winter Mountain's first full album since his acclaimed self-titled, debut album in 2013, this album bearing continued patronage of the Lakeman family. Having found earlier support of folk star Cara Dillon and her husband Sam Lakeman, this time around Seth Lakeman shares his...

Siobhan Miller - Strata (Songprint Records)

From the first note this is a considered album, that smoulders with class and sophistication. Siobhan Miller's voice is set against sympathetic backing from a stellar cast from folk's whose who. Kris Drever, Aidan O'Rourke from Lau, Ian Carr and Phil Cunningham, along with many others, provide...

Dietrich Strause - How Cruel That Hunger Binds (Self Release)

Dietrich Strause is a difficult man to pin down, on this album his music is informed by Americana, Alt Folk and early jazz but it is all filtered through a gauze of strangeness. At times he evokes the absinthe melancholy of Madeline Peyroux, at times his singing is right there with the best of The...

Townes Van Zandt - Flyin' Shoes LP (Charly)

When the needle first located the groove on a borrowed copy of Townes Van Zandt's 1978 release FLYIN' SHOES, it had already been around for a good ten years. It was in fact, the first LP I'd heard by the Texan singer-songwriter, although many of his songs were familiar from versions recorded by...

Townes Van Zandt - Texas Rain LP (Charly)

From the opening few bars of If I Needed You, we know we're onto a good thing. Uncomplicated and immediately accessible, Townes Van Zandt introduces us once again to his artistry with a song that needs no introduction. The fact that on this version the singer-songwriter is joined by Emmylou Harris...

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