DOWALLY – early bird // night owl (own label)

early bird // night owl is the third album from Dowally and it is made up of original contemporary folk interspersed with some traditional folk which their sound is based on.  There are also influences from many musical genres which gives the album a lovely rich and rounded feel.

Dowally is Dan Abrahams (guitar, harmonium, piano, Rhodes, vocals and double bass) and Rachel Walker (fiddle and vocals) they have been playing together for about 5 years and they are also half of the transatlantic group Wayward Jane.

The album is mainly instrumental with tracks taking the listener between the soulful strings of the opening track of ‘Morning’ to jolly tunes such as the ‘Geese From The East’, the almost funky ‘Cinepizz’ with its guitar lick, through the foot tapping tune of ‘Back To Bute’ and then back to the restful track ‘Sleep’ written by Dan and on which he also sings.

The songs ‘Three Little Babes’, ‘Turkish Reverie’ ‘Two Sisters’ and ‘Sleep’ feature the lovely vocals of Rachel and her singing style and clear diction puts me in mind of Megan Henwood.

They have some great guest artists performing on the album, Phil Alexander (accordion), Graham Coe (cello, mandolin, vocals) and Michael Starkey (banjo, vocals).  It was recorded at Chamber Studios in Edinburgh, engineered by Graeme Young and mixed and mastered by Mattie Foulds.

If like me, you’d not come across Dowally before then I can heartily recommend adding early bird // night owl to your CD library as it’s a really uplifting relaxed listen.  I will also be looking to see them play live should they ever stray south of the border when we get back to doing proper live gigs again.

Duncan Chappell

Artist’s website:

‘Sleep’ – official video:

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