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Filtering by Tag: Feb 2019

Darlingside - Look Up and Fly Away EP (22/02/19)

  • Artist: Darlingside

  • Release Date: 22nd February, 2019

  • Genre: Folk

  • Record Label: More Doug Records

  • Tracks: 6

  • Website: http://www.darlingside.com

It’s always very exciting when one of our favourite US quartets release new music. ‘Look Up And Fly Away’ the brand new EP from Darlingside has come as both a surprise and at the same time a special treat.

The EP is comprised of six songs selected from a handful of outtakes from the band’s highly acclaimed 2018 album Extralife. The EP showcases once again Darlingside’s seamless harmonies, unique skill as multi-instrumentalists and intricate songwriting. It shares some similar themes to ‘Extralife’ including exploring nostalgia and the different stages of life and ultimately the concept of death.

The EP starts with the reflective ‘Rodeo’. Super songwriting, elegant harmonies, a soft horn arrangement and lightly picked acoustic guitars. Lyrics like “The clerk is a man behind glass, behind his eyes is the past” conjure dreamlike images of nostalgia. The theme of nostalgia continues in ‘Bright as the Day’ as they recount his past younger days. Bright accordion, mournful fiddle and acoustic guitars combine with their trademark harmonies.

Next up is the title track, the self-empowerment hymn ‘Look Up And Fly Away’. It reminded me of a cross between the Beatles and CSNY. With themes including ‘sunny skies’ and ‘fighting for myself’, and ‘finding your place in life’. It has a very positive tone and lifts the overall mood of the EP.

The pace slows down again with the orchestrated and layered ‘Heart Again’, which drifts between solo vocals and heavenly harmonies. I love the richness of the chorus. Things change up again with the wonderful ‘Paradise Bay’, one of the stand outs on the EP. It opens nearly as an acappella song with an underlying drone. The crisp retro harmonies sounding like classic CSNY. The short final track ‘Untitled’ is a simple instrumental that closes out what is an extremely strong collection of music.

Megson - Contradicshun (08/02/19)

Megson request that you join them on a journey of contradictions and conversations. From Victorian domestic disagreements to 21st century martial arts misadventures, all the perplexities of the human condition will be laid before your ears.

Stu and Debbie Hanna (aka Megson) began writing and collecting the songs for ‘Contradicshun’ about two year ago when they stumbled across the title song, an obscure composition by Geordie Victorian balladeer Joe Wilson in ‘Tyneside Songs, Ballads and Drolleries’ (1870). This song sparked the idea to write and collect an album of songs with the subject of contradictions and conversations. Exploring the ‘two sides of the same coin’ theme.

The music was recorded in their self-built garage studio as well as a cobbled together studio in their beloved 2002 5 berth Avondale Dart caravan. The acoustics of the caravan brought out the best of the banjo and fiddle on the album though the sound of passing postmen and local wildlife can no doubt be faintly heard in the background.

This is their 9th studio album and 13th record produced for their own cottage industry label EDJ Records & Production which has produced and released albums for Benji Kirkpatrick, Kelly Oliver, Show Of Hands, The Young 'Uns and Lucy Ward amongst many others. Lyrically this is their most ambitious album to date, every word finely tuned to fit the meter, music and narrative & drawing inspiration from classic folk songsters like Ewan MacColl, Pete Seeger and Vin Garbutt.

Again this is an album rooted in Megson's native North East with many of the songs taken from 19th Century Tyneside manuscripts like ‘Rhymes of the Northern Bards’. But unlike other Megson album there is also a nod to their East Anglian residency with a song about a fictitious Cambridgeshire Judo team.

Joining Stu & Debbie are the always excellent John Parker (Nizlopi) on Bass, session musician Patrick Duffin (Percussion) and their neighbour Paul Youdan (Backing Vocals). Since releasing their last album ‘Good Times Will Come Again’ in 2016 Megson have been nominated for their fourth BBC Radio 2 Folk Award and have performed over 200 packed out shows across the country.

The album opens gently with ‘Are You Sitting Comfortably’, a soul searching exchange about the humdrum ‘hamster wheel’ of life. The title reminded me of the start of every ‘Listen With Mother’ radio show in the 1960’s. The mandolin sparkles in the powerful title track ‘Contradicshun’, a 19th century plea for harmony rather than discord which was written by Joe Wilson. A song as current ow as when it was written almost 150 years ago.

Another song which is right on point is ‘The New Girl’ a touching story of migrants viewed with suspicion by some when they travel to a new country. Despite the fact that many of our towns and cities have been built by the self same people. ‘All of us are travellers stumbling through life’ explores the idea than we are all citizens of both somewhere and nowhere. Very little is known of the lyrics of ‘Voice Of A Nation’ found in the 1812 collection ‘Rhymes Of The Northern Bards’. The arrangement scorns the democratic system of the time and backs the parliamentary reform call which culminated in a cavalry charge on more than 60,000 people in the 1819 Peterloo Massacre.

Although at first unlikely bedfellows in ‘Toast :Jackey and Jenny’, Stu and Debs have combined a hearty drinking song with a cautionary temperance song written by James Rewcastle in the early 19th century, It compares the pro’s and con’s of both viewpoints. Which side will you support? More tea vicar?

With Debs taking the lead and drawn from ‘The Northumbrian Minstrelsy’, the elegant and eloquent ‘I Drew My Ship Into The Harbour’ is a night visiting song gone wrong. A must see live track is ‘Two Sides Of Every Conversation’ a humorous and clever exchange between a married couple who recall key events in their relationship let say……rather differently. Wry and quirky but very funny, The type of song which Stu and Debs really excel..

‘The Keach In The Creel’ (or caught in the basket) is a traditional Child ballad. It recounts the story of a bonny lad lowered in a basket into his lover’s room. It sees Stu on banjo & mandolin and Debs on accordion. For all those who love Megson’s excellent ‘The Longshot’, the next track the ‘Barrington Judo Club’ could be your new favourite. Giving a nod to their East Anglia stomping ground, Stu takes the lead in a song which follows the wiitty, clever but fictitious story of a local Judo club and their day to day struggles. Watch out for the punchline. ‘A Week Away In The Caravan’ is a semi autobiographical story from Stu and Debs holiday memoirs and dedicated to all fellow caravan owners,

A Megson album is always the hallmark of high quality cleverly written and arrangement folk music, full of heart. social conscience and a keen sense of humour. Another big winner from Stu and Debs.

Purchase your own copy from the link below >>>

Martyn Joseph - Here Come The Young (08/02/19)

Martyn Joseph - Here Come The Young.jpg
  • Artist: Martyn Joseph

  • Release Date: 8th February, 2019

  • Genre: Singer-Songwriter, Folk

  • Record Label: Pipe Records

  • Tracks: 11

  • Website:

Acclaimed singer-songwriter Martyn Joseph returns with new album Here Come The Young which was produced by Gerry Diver (Tom Robinson, Lisa Knapp, Sam Lee) & Martyn says of his new album, "The songs are exploring uncertainty to varying degrees through different subject matter both in the personal and political. I hope for those who listen it will be the sort of record that takes you on a journey and leaves you buoyed and hopeful at the end, despite the fact that we go to a few tough places."

Born in Penarth near Cardiff, Martyn is gifted with the rare ability to speak to the soul with his expressive and poignant lyrics and has enjoyed a career spanning 35 years to date, over a half a million record sales and thousands of live performances. He has created his own style and reputation as a stellar songwriter, jaw-dropping guitar player and mesmerising performer, and social justice is an essential part of his music, which has been recognised with various humanitarian awards and plaudits.

On Here Come The Young, his songs are imbued with an optimism at a time when it is not easily found. Running throughout the album is a sense of hope and belief in the good of the majority, and that this will overcome the loud, cynical noise that pervades. For Joseph, songs are photographs of moments and visions be they good or bad, his lyrics encourage people to fight fear, cynicism and negativity and the rhetoric of those who hold power. The title track 'Here Come The Young' suggests the young don't have the same baggage of past generations and are more open and inclusive On 'Loves Majority', a protest song of sorts, the greater collective good will always outweigh the bad. There is a heart-breaking tribute to those who work for the betterment of others on 'This Glass'. Self-doubt is the subject in 'Oh My Soul', encouraging belief in one's journey. Six years ago, Martyn visited the West Bank in Palestine to play a festival and this became a catalyst to him forming a non-profit organisation to work with grassroots projects across the world. It was his experience in Gaza that lead him to write 'Take Back The Sky', where young kids fly kites as a symbol of freedom 'the wrist that holds the string of dreams for one brief moment takes back the sky'.

Martyn has previously toured with the likes of Art Garfunkel, Jools Holland, Ani DiFranco, Suzanne Vega, Mike and The Mechanics, Joan Armatrading, Celine Dion and Shirley Bassey. In 2016, in addition to playing over 170 shows worldwide, he was asked by the EFDSS and British Parliament to write and perform as part of "Sweet Liberties" with Nancy Kerr, Sam Carter and Maz O'Connor to mark 800 years of British democracy. One of his songs from this, "Nye" celebrating Nye Bevan, the author of the NHS, has been enthusiastically received by audiences everywhere, as well as having BBC national airplay on Mark Radcliffe's Folk Show and Tom Robinson's 6 Music show.

"Martyn Joseph's albums are always a massive event for me and 'Here Come The Young' is superb. Strong, powerful and brave, it takes Martyn's songs to a new, exciting and challenging place." Bob Harris OBE on Here Come The Young

"Thrilled that this collaboration came together - this will absolutely prove a major turning point in Martyn's recording career - a creative partnership between two of my all-time favourite artists." Tom Robinson on Martyn Joseph and Gerry Diver.

Buy your copy from the link below >>>

Songs Of Our Native Daughters (22/02/19)

Songs Of Our Native Daughters.jpg
  • Artist: Songs Of Our Native Daughters

  • Release Date: 22nd February, 2019

  • Genre: Roots

  • Record Label: Smithsonian Folkways

  • Tracks: 13

  • Website:

Songs of Our Native Daughters gathers together kindred musicians Rhiannon Giddens, Amythyst Kiah, Leyla McCalla, and Allison Russell in song and sisterhood to communicate with their forebears. Drawing on and reclaiming early minstrelsy and banjo music, these musicians reclaim, recast, and spotlight the often unheard and untold history of their ancestors, whose stories remain vital and alive today. The material on Songs of Our Native Daughters -- written and sung in various combinations -- is inspired by New World slave narratives, discrimination and how it has shaped our American experience, as well as musicians such as Haitian troubadour Althiery Dorval and Mississippi Hill Country string player Sid Hemphill, and more.

Signs - Tedeschi Trucks Band (15/02/19)

  • Artist: Tedeschi Trucks Band

  • Release Date: 15th February, 2019

  • Genre: Rock, Blues

  • Record Label: Fantasy Records

  • Tracks: 11

  • Website:

On February 15, Tedeschi Trucks Band and Fantasy Records will release ‘SIGNS’, their 4th studio album and a new high-water mark in their recording career. With 11 originals penned by the band and a few dear friends, produced by Derek Trucks, Jim Scott and Bobby Tis and meticulously recorded to two-inch analogue tape for the first time, SIGNS reflects on the losses suffered by the band in the past few years while still finding cause for hope and celebration in the beauty of life and nature.

Pre-order your copy in the link below >>>

Walk Through Fire - Yola (22/02/19)

  • Artist: Yola

  • Release date: 22nd February, 2018

  • Genre: Country Soul/Blues, Americana, Singer-Songwriter

  • Record Label: Easy Eye Sounds/Nonesuch

  • Tracks: 12

  • Website: https://www.iamyola.com

  • Review By: Gary Smith (LCM)

We are big fan of Yola Carter here at LCM. This British rising stars stunning debut solo album, ‘Walk Through Fire’, is produced by The Black Keys’ eight-time Grammy Award winner Dan Auerbach. Yola has been blazing her own trail with an unshakable passion for the soul and country music she loves. ‘Walk Through Fire’ is a contemporary twist on a traditional sonic tapestry of orchestral strings, fiddle, steel and shimmering tremolo guitars, it provides the perfect soundtrack to Yola’s arresting vocals, which first came to the attention of Auerbach after a friend sent him a video of Yola performing in Nashville. The album has a wonderfully rich and warm retro feel and we think it will be an instant classic. It’s full of heart, passion and powerful vocals from Yola.

Yola’s video (directed by Reid Long) for her debut song ‘Ride Out In The Country’ is the first taste of the forthcoming record. Dan Auerbach stated, “The moment I met Yola I was impressed. Her spirit fills the room, just like her voice... she has the ability to sing in a full roar or barely a whisper and that is a true gift. She made everyone in the studio an instant believer.” Yola said, “Lyrically the song is about escapism and the video adds an awesome twist. We wrote the song about getting away from an oppressive environment. I was in an abusive relationship a while back, so I drew on the feeling of relief and release that I had when I truly felt free.”

Hailing from a small town outside Bristol, Yola grew up in poverty with an unsupportive parent who “banned” her from making any music. She later became homeless, living on the streets of London and also experienced stress-induced voice loss. Yola overcame these challenges to launch a successful sideline in writing, performing on pop hits and briefly joined Massive Attack. She was also the main writer and front woman in Phantom Limb, opening for artists including James Brown and Dr. John before pursuing her solo career in 2016. She quickly made her mark in the US with her vocal powers and innovative songwriting winning early supporters, including Rolling Stone, the Wall Street Journal, Paste, Stereogum, NPR and The Current’s Bill DeVille who exclaimed, “She's a powerhouse of a singer: she's part Southern soul, she's part gospel and she's completely amazing. You'll want to remember her name: Yola.”

Written and recorded at Auerbach’s Nashville studio, Easy Eye Sound, Walk Through Fire is a truly collaborative record. It was written in the studio by Yola and Auerbach with contributions from songwriting legends who between them have written songs for artists from Glen Campbell to Aretha Franklin. Auerbach also assembled his Easy Eye Sound all-star house band composed of legendary session players. Musicians who performed on the record include bassist Dave Roe (Johnny Cash) as well as drummer Gene Chrisman and pianist Bobby Wood who played on hits by Dusty Springfield and Elvis Presley. Guest performers include up-and-comer Molly Tuttle and country music icon Vince Gill. Yola’s debut album Walk Through Fire is the latest release on Dan Auerbach’s record label, Easy Eye Sound, distributed by his longtime label Nonesuch Records.

‘Walk Through Fire’ is set to be one of the top UK Americana releases this year and is already No.1 on the UK Americana chart.

Yola will be on her UK tour soon, with her London date at the 100 Club on May 29th…..don’t miss her live.

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