Easy and pleasant, third time’s a Allure for Edinburgh band.
‘The Flood’ is Scottish quartet Wayward Jane’s third album and it’s a keeper. The Edinburgh band merges American and Scottish traditions and refreshes them each. All 4 gifted multi-instrumentalists sing and three of them (Dan Abrahams, Sam Gillespie, and Michael Starkey) play guitar. Abrahams additionally performs double bass, Gillespie the wood flute, and Starkey the five-string banjo. Rachel Petyt’s fiddle enriches and provides emotion to the combo. Particular person members of the band additionally work on different initiatives –Abrahams and Petyt with the progressive Dowally; Abrahams with the soul band The FOO Birds; Gillespie is one half of Northumbrian folks group The Brothers Gillespie, and Starkey is a part of old-time duo Hannah Learn & Michael Starkey. ‘The Flood’ is what occurs while you deliver all this expertise collectively.
The first three songs set the sample for the album. The first two, ‘Edinburgh Rain’ and the instrumental ‘Brokeback’ are unique and the third, Elizabeth Cotton’s ‘Shake Sugaree’, is a traditional. ‘Edinburgh Rain’ leads off with an instrumental introduction paying homage to the sounds you may hear in Tennessee, simplicity made complicated by a number of devices and musicians. However when the vocals begin you recognize you aren’t in Knoxville. The tune is a paean to Edinburgh and it’s sung by a Scottish voice. ‘Brokeback’ is a superb showcase of the entire band’s instrumental skills and ‘Shake Sugaree’ highlights Wayward Jane’s capability to sing. The album additionally has one other traditional, Fred Cockerham’s ‘Little Statchel’, the video of which was launched earlier than the album and featured on AUK.
‘Crossing Over Water’ opens with two guitars that ring like a carillon. Then they’re joined by a banjo, then a fiddle, all taking part in the identical easy chorus. The tempo picks up and Pytet begins to sing. The piece is a gem, impressed by the expertise of refugees. Its politics are poetic, gently portray photos, not marketing campaign posters. The tune winds up with the identical chorus with which it started. That is the one tune on the album with Pytet because the lead singer. That is too dangerous, as she has an excellent voice which makes this tune one of many album’s highlights.
Shut your eyes as you hear and the chief impression left by ‘The Flood’ is that Wayward Jane’s musicians have performed many a ceilidh and in various low-ceilinged pubs with roaring fires and patrons who really hearken to music. They aren’t a bar band, used to having to play over the sound of well-oiled conversations. Their music is light, giving one another house to fill with the person sounds of guitars, banjo, bass and fiddle. Their voices create complicated harmonies, instrumentals and vocals combining in distinctive and timeless music that conjures up the assorted traditions upon which they draw whereas reflecting the second. One minute you simply need to sit and admire the candy sounds accompanying their poetry in ‘Down The River’ and ‘Liberty’. Then your ft are a’tappin, itchin to bop to ‘Little Bazoo’. That is music to relish.