Jeffrey Foucault: Blood Brothers

When we started this reviewing lark we’d sometimes have a record of the week, although we usually forgot: this week it would be this. Foucault’s from Wisconsin so this is Americana with some of the twang of country. He has an evocative voice and the songs are all good. We’ve not felt this much settled […]

Andrew Hawkey: Long Story Short

We liked Hawkey before we heard a note: he was born in 1942 (yes, really) in Wadebridge, Cornwall, a favourite Review Corner haunt (and home to Andrew Ridgeley) and also lived in Cheshire. He left school at 15 to work on poultry farms, but became an estate agent. He was in London for the swinging […]

Harp and a Monkey: The Victorians

This is a joy of an album, something a little different and with plenty of interest for the listener. The title seems to be from the fact that they’re from Manchester and sing of tales from the city’s industrial history; they’re a band that tells stories set to music. The cover sleeve is a peppered […]

David Keenan: A Beginners Guide To Braver

This is an album that’s going to be a classic; the only question is whether cult or mainstream. Keenan sings with an intensity and directness it’s impossible not to like, with lyrics that make sense, and often a full band; this isn’t just some earnest folk singer strumming a guitar. The intensity is perhaps explained […]

David Gray: White Ladder (20th Anniversary Reissue)

Long ago there must have been genetic mutation that made it impossible for humans to dislike David Gray’s White Ladder. A final joke from the Neanderthals, maybe. Statistics show that every house in Ireland owns at least one copy, and many have dormer extensions made solely of White Ladder CDs. We vaguely remember the era […]

Skylark and The Scorpion: Weather The Storm & Melanie Martinez: K-12

You wait ages for a multimedia concept involving film and music to come along, and then two arrive at the same time. Weather The Storm is accompanied by a 10-part short film set against the Jurassic coastline of the Shetland Isles. Musically, it’s heartfelt and gentle folk; it’s on Guy Garvey’s record label so think […]

Squirrel Flower: I Was Born Swimming

One might expect some kind of fey folk frippery from a person (Ella O’Connor Williams) who calls herself Squirrel Flower, but this is pretty decent. Squirrel’s got a deeper voice than might be predicted and a fair few of the songs are decently beefy, the guitar playing sturdy in the vein of Dinosaur Jr, albeit […]

Salt House: Huam

This is folk music — Ewan MacPherson on guitars, Jenny Sturgeon on harmonium and guitar and Lauren MacColl, fiddle, viola, vocals — but in spirit it reminded us of chamber music: intimate tunes played by a small group of people in a small venue. Like classical works, the music is meticulously written and arranged, and […]

Man The Lifeboats: When The Time Bell Rings

The album title could be lifted from Dire Straits’ classic Sultans of Swing, and, if not of sultans of that genre, Man The Lifeboats are at least rulers of reel (sorry, best we could do). This album is a collection of rocking folk tunes that would have an audience (at the very least) tapping its […]

Neil Young and Crazy Horse: Colorado

Colorado is not one of Young’s great albums but it’s a grower and could go down as one of his later-career highlights. There’s a film with it; Young’s films are best avoided but someone who did watch said he comments in it to his band: “It doesn’t have to be good, just feel good.” That’s […]