Category Archives: Roots and Folk Reviews

Billy Bragg and Joe Henry Shine their Light in London

This was one of those gigs that you catch at just the right time and place. As the trans-Atlantic partnership of Bragg and Henry played the show, polls were beginning to close in the US presidential elections, and the setting … Continue reading

Posted in Roots and Folk Reviews, Singer-Songwriter Reviews | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Jarlath Henderson – Hearts Broken, Heads Turned

Every now and then you get an agitator in the world of folk; someone who takes the songs that have thrived for tens or hundreds of years, and makes them fresh for a new generation – people like Jim Moray … Continue reading

Posted in Roots and Folk Reviews | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Sam Beam and Jesca Hoop – Love Letter for Fire

  If Beam and Hoop sounds like a gymnastics event, it is the songwriting that stretches and flexes on this fluid performance. Fans of both should be thrilled.

Posted in Roots and Folk Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Afro-Celt Sound System – The Source

There are few bands whose names are as appropriate as Afro Celt Sound System. It feels a bit tacky to do so, but you could describe them crudely as ‘Riverdance on safari’, so well do they blend the Celtic and … Continue reading

Posted in Roots and Folk Reviews, World Music Reviews | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Songs of Separation

“Songs of Separation” isn’t really about separation, admits  project creator Jenny Hill in the liner notes to this feast of female folk artists, explaining that it really looks across borders “to remind us that we’re all so much more connected … Continue reading

Posted in Roots and Folk Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Show of Hands – Centenary: Words and Music of the Great War (2CD)

There will be few better markers of the First World War centenary this year. 4.5 Stars CD 1: 22 tracks, 38 mins CD 2: 12 tracks, 42 mins Hands On Music Of all the celebrations marking the centenary of the … Continue reading

Posted in Reviews, Roots and Folk Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Mike Farris – Soul Survivor

As a former member of Stevie Ray Vaughan’s Double Trouble, he has his roots deep in the blues, but has re-invented himself as a Blues/Gospel artist, with more than half an ear to the classic arrangements of the ‘sixties. With … Continue reading

Posted in Blues Reviews, Roots and Folk Reviews | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Kate Rusby – 20 (Pure Records via Island)

Another celebration of 20 great years of folk, this puts Rusby’s gorgeous voice in the spotlight 4 Stars Time: 20 Tracks / 90 minutes What was it about 1982 that started so much talent? Both Show of Hands and Kate … Continue reading

Posted in Roots and Folk Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Show of Hands – Wake the Union (Hands On Music)

The duo celebrates 20 years of quality roots music with a semi-Americana release… and does it work! 4.5 Stars Time: 15 Tracks / 57 minutes When I first saw Show of Hands, I was struck by how traditional their song … Continue reading

Posted in Roots and Folk Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Abigail Washburn: City of Refuge (Rounder / Foreign Children Records)

Decemberists producer and clawhammer banjo player join forces to create a fascinating, lush take on nugrass, with an exotic oriental edge. It is superbly executed by world-class players. 4+ Stars Time: 11 tracks / 41 minutes This may be a … Continue reading

Posted in Roots and Folk Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment