KIRSTY MERRYN Our Bright Night [Release date 24.04.20]
Kirsty Merryn has only been on the folk scene for a few years, yet already she has been making a name for herself with glowing reviews for her debut album and supporting the likes of Richard Thompson.
On this, her second album, she is joined by Alex Alex (guitar, bass, vocals, synth) and two guests – Sam Kelly duets on ‘Shanklin Chine’ and Phil Beer plays violin on ‘Twilight/Banks of the Sweet Primroses’. The latter opens the album and sets the musical stall out, with the piano and vocals of Kirsty Merryn coming through loud and clear. Other highlights include the aforementioned ‘Shanklin Chine’ with Sam Kelly’s singing suiting the song well and the hauntingly beautiful vocal on ‘The Wake’.
It is a very soothing album, more at the Clannad end of folk being piano led, rather than the traditional instruments normally associated with folk music. Kirsty Merryn certainly warrants your listening time, possessing a soothing and melodious vocal, backed by some truly wonderful piano playing. ****
Review by Jason Ritchie
TOM KITCHING Seasons of Change [Release date 17.04.20]
Fiddle player Tom Kitching set out in 2018 on a busking tour of England, which lasted for eighteen months and led to not only this album, but an accompanying book ‘Seasons Of Change: Busking In England’. The book is more about his thoughts and observations when busking around various towns and cities, and how the English viewed themselves and others.
The album is a mix of traditional tunes he used whilst busking and self-penned tunes based on his travels. He is joined by Jude Rees, who plays English Border bagpipes and Marit Falt on Nordic mandola and cittern.
Tom Kitching’s playing veers from the jaunty air of ‘Old Molly Oxford’ to the more pastoral, gentle playing on ‘Hellebore/Ice House Schottische’. One of his own tunes, ‘In-Store Bakery’ is a delight (based on his visits to said establishments when out on the road) and should be adopted forthwith as in-store music at your local supermarket.
Tom Kitching has recorded an album full of vigour and memorable tunes. Heartily recommended and a perfect soundtrack whilst reading his book. ***1/2
Review by Jason Ritchie
GRACES COLLIDE – Our Tomorrow
Facebook [Release date 10.04.20]
Graces Collide has been around for around ten years now, however they are now in a position to release their debut album. Currently a three piece (they are without a drummer at present) consisting of Danny Wenham on vocal/lead guitar and Jurgan & Will Hamblin playing bass and rhythm guitars respectively. George Donoghue (The Rocket Dolls) was in the producer’s chair and it has been mixed & mastered by Romesh Dodangoda (Phil Campbell & The Bastard Sons, Bullet For My Valentine).
Those who enjoy their rock hard and modern, Graces Collide will float your boat from the opener ‘This Hell’ (shades of Those Damn Crows) or ‘Ride’, which has been released as a single and is a stonking rocker.
The Rocket Dolls frontman Nikki Smash guests on ‘Another Sun’, an album stand out. Nice mix of Alter Bridge and Shinedown on here.
A competent debut, with a couple of stand outs, however it can does lack a couple more memorable tunes which you need to get known in the crowded rock arena. ***1/2
Review by Jason Ritchie
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Power Plays w/c 13 June 2022 (Mon-Fri)
IVORY SKIES – Bring Me Up (indie)
HONG FAUX Feign Death To Stay Alive (Golden Robot Records)
OVERLAPS Mind Over Matter (indie)
SOLE SYNDICATE – Brave Enough (Scarlet Records)
DAVID PAICH Spirit Of The Moonrise (Mascot)
JAILBIRDS The River (indie)
NOUVEAU ARCADE Die On Me Now (FiXT)
Featured Albums w/c 13 June (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 DEF LEPPARD Diamond Star Halos (BMG)
12:00-13:00 LONERIDER Sundown (Escape Music)
14:00-16:00 VANDERWOLF 12 Little Killers (Vandermax Music)
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