Mari Joyce: Dear Moon

We listen to a lot of challenging music and for some weeks we’ve been missing something calming; we had some lovely Elgar songs and plenty of folk, but it wasn’t quite what we needed.

Then came this. Ten seconds in, and we knew this was it. It helped that it reminded us of Fisherman’s Woman era Emilíana Torrini; FW is a 2005 album we still play because not only is the music nice, but it’s got an intimate feel of being in the room with her, chairs creaking, and the sound of the guitar being handled. It’s also pleasantly slightly away with the fairies.

This self-released album from Joyce is similar. She’s got a gentle voice, like Torrini (though in places she sounds a bit Dido) and it’s all recorded to sound intimate. The guitar, violin and vocals are being played right next to you, and it’s got a similar feel of whimsy to Torrini.

Joyce is apparently well-known on the Norfolk folk scene – this album comes from our man in Norfolk – and the album appears to be inspired by the countryside of that area, with the tide and water referenced in song titles. Written on the banks of the river Yare, it’s all about love, life and nature.

It’s a lovely album you will listen to over and over; her voice is beguiling and sweet, and the playing is good – the violin in Tide is lovely, but it’s all good. Johanna Herron adds harmony, Alex Hobbs plays cello, fiddle comes from Alex Patterson and cajon from Iestyn Griffith.

Not only worth a listen, but it’s also worth buying. Find out more at

About jerobear

Weekly newspaper editor in Cheshire, England. I blog my editorials and the CDs I write about. I play drums, drink coffee, play music, meditate. I hate filling in forms.

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