The folking Store

UK folk and Americana music website folking.comWelcome to the folking store… All articles below contain direct banner links to the relevant Amazon web page for the featured product (usually the CD, Vinyl or download link for the press release or review).

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Marianne Faithfull announces new solo album

Negative Capability is the 21st album by Marianne Faithfull and the most emotionally powerful of her 54-year recording career. Facing down arthritis and bolstered by collaborators including Warren Ellis, Nick Cave, Rob Ellis, Ed Harcourt and Mark Lanegan, Negative Capability is charged with brutal honesty and autobiographical reflection as she ...
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TOM PETTY AND BOB DYLAN – New York 1986 (Rox Vox RV2CD2128)

In the mid-80s and in the midst of his own musical wasteland, Bob Dylan went down a number of different angles in a bid to rejuvenate his career. While some of these efforts were more successful than others, one of the more favourable endeavours from this time was his work ...
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KITTY MACFARLANE – Namer Of Clouds (Navigator Records, NAVIGATOR104)

Given the praise heaped on Kitty Macfarlane’s 2016 EP, Tide & Time, expectations are understandably high for her first full-length album release, Namer Of Clouds. Macfarlane’s light soprano, paired with an equally light-fingered plucky guitar, nonetheless contains a filament of controlled determination. Softness and steel are never far apart, even ...
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GREGORY ALAN ISAKOV – Evening Machines (Dualtone Records)

Evening Machines was released on October 5th, Isakov’s fifth album. Isakov is a full time farmer in Colorado, who tends to his music career in the winter (he has his studio in a barn on his farm). He has been described as an indie-folk artist. This feels like a full ...
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PETE SEEGER BIG BILL BROONZY – Cahn Auditorium, Northwestern University (Echoes ECHO2CD2077)

Another recording from the vaults is Pete Seeger and Big Bill Broonzy from the Cahn Auditorium at Northwestern University, in Evanston, Illinois, 1956 – a time in which McCarthyism was rife and the blacklist meant that performances in college and university campuses were Seeger’s main outlet. The performance is unscripted ...
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LONGSTAY – Calling Me Home (Goldrush Records, GOLDCD017)

Calling Me Home is the debut album from Longstay, a precocious Perth quintet, still with an average age of only 17 - and with four years’ experience already behind them. These super-confident players are firmly rooted in Country and Americana, with more than a hint of the ‘70s thrown in ...
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ANNE MARIE ALMEDAL – Lightshadow (VMP 18/012 CD)

Anne Marie Almedal is a Norwegian singer and composer whose album, Lightshadow, is now on release. Almedal, was the lead singer of the band Velvet Belly from 1989 – 2003 and has released a number of solo albums since then, a little more folk oriented than those I’ve listened to ...
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BOB DYLAN AND THE BAND – 1974 Tour Live (Rox Vox RV3CD2137)

1974 Tour Live is a pretty self-explanatory title, but if you’re still curious for anything else other than the obvious, it is a three disc set, covering two shows from January ’74 (Boston and New York) from Bob Dylan and The Band, recorded during their mid-70s comeback tour. The first ...
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LUKA BLOOM – Sometimes I Fly… (MIG MIG 02102 CD)

This album was recorded by Radio Bremen in 2001. Luka Bloom is big in Germany; he’s big in Ireland naturally but for some unfathomable reason he isn’t really big in the UK. Sometimes I Fly... is his second live album and was probably recorded about the same time as the ...
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THE SALTS – Brave (Braccan Records BRCD9001)

The Salts perform shanties but not quite in the way you might expect. They are five seasoned musicians with a remarkable list of credits to their names from Pete Best via Thunderclap Newman to Ben E King. Now based in the leafy suburbs of Surrey and Berkshire, Brave is their ...
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MALCOLM HOLCOMBE – Come Hell Or High Water (Gypsy Eyes Music)

If you feel that ‘Southern folk golem’ Holcombe’s croaky roll-up rasp suggests he’s been shovelling coal dust of his cereals and makes Tom Waits sound like Perry Como, then you’ll be pleased to hear that on his latest album, Come Hell Or High Water, his third in as many years, ...
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Yvonne Lyon announces new album with Stewart and Carol Henderson

Vesper Sky is a stunning and unique collection of songs and poems, written and performed by Stewart Henderson, Yvonne Lyon and Carol Henderson. Singer/songwriter Yvonne Lyon has been significantly influenced by Stewart Henderson's poems and songs over many years. This new collaboration has allowed her the opportunity to develop her ...
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Dan Frechette & Laurel Thomsen announce new album

As with their previous three albums, Canadian-American Roots-Folk duo Dan Frechette & Laurel Thomsen ponder contemporary subject matter with vintage sensibility in their fourth release, Driving By Candlelight. Featuring diverse guitar styles, dynamic and emotionally expressive violin and viola arrangements, and vocal chemistry reminiscent of Simon and Garfunkel, these 13 original ...
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J.P. HARRIS – Sometimes Dogs Bark At Nothing (Free Dirt DIRT-CD-0090)

You might be wondering if J.P. Harris looks anything like the cover picture. Well, I can’t speak for all the tattoos but, yes, that’s pretty much him! J.P. is from Alabama and his lifestyle follows that of Cisco Houston, travelling for work and describing himself as “a carpenter who writes ...
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ETHAN HANNA – Welcome To The Batlands (Tin Man Heart)

Ethan Hanna is from Lisburn, Northern Ireland. He’s been around for while, paying his dues as a soloist and in bands, but Welcome To The Batlands is his debut solo album. ‘Perfect’, the first single lifted from it and the second track here, is a gem of a song – ...
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Breabach announce new album and tour dates

Frenzy of the Meeting is the latest release from multi award-winning Scottish folk band Breabach. Continuing to build on the ideas and experimentation from their 2016 album Astar, this new work is explorative and creative. The new release also sees the band take exciting steps towards developing a more expansive ...
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THE BETTERDAYS – Backlash (NTB Records CD 1004)

I realise that this isn’t our usual fare but it’s such a gem that we couldn’t resist. The cover shows The Betterdays from Plymouth in their mid-sixties heyday when these tracks were recorded. They released a single in 1965 which failed to chart and disagreed with their record company about ...
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ANTOINE & OWENA – Hands, Hearts & Hangings (own label)

We receive a lot of unsolicited albums, often debuts from new artists. Some we may gloss over; others we play more than once. So it is with Hands, Hearts & Hangings, the first album from Wiltshire duo Antoine Architeuthis and Owena Archer. Both are experienced musicians and are beginning to ...
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GILMORE & ROBERTS – A Problem Of Our Kind (GR! GRR08)

Gilmore & Roberts are Katriona Gilmore (vocals, fiddle, viola, B3 organ and mandolin) and Jamie Roberts (vocals, guitar, percussion). Their album A Problem Of Our Kind, due for release on 12th October 2018, benefits from additional instrumental support from Fred Claridge (drums and percussion), Matt Downer (double bass), Sarah Smout ...
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DOLPHIN BOY – The Highland Swing (Skye Records SCRCX005)

There is story behind this album although I’m not sure I fully understand it. Once upon a time DJ Andy Dolphin, aka Dolphin Boy, was producing what he called “sample-heavy, bootleg-style music”. Late last year he and former Peatbog Faerie Iain Copeland, drummer with techno-folk fusion band Sketch, discussed the ...
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YOUNG WATERS – Young Waters (own label YW1)

Now trading under a rather more attractive moniker (borrowed from a Scottish Child Ballad) than their previous appellation as Snufkin, guitarist Theo Passingham and percussionist Kerry Ann Jangle sharing lead, Liam O’Connell on double bass and harmonies, violinist Calum Smith and Rowen Elliot on viola, made their recording debut with ...
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EDDI READER – Cavalier (Reveal 077CDX)

Forty years into her career, Reader’s 11th solo studio album, Cavalier, continues the recent trend of mixing original and traditional material with, naturally, something from Robert Burns. Recorded in Glasgow and co-produced with husband John Douglas, and featuring a plethora of musicians, Boo Hewardine, John McCusker, Siobhan Miller, Phil Cunningham ...
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JIMMY LaFAVE – Peace Town (Music Road Records MRR CD030)

A leading light of the Red Dirt country movement, LaFave succumbed to cancer last year, but not before laying down a 100 or so recordings over a three-day period. Twenty of them form Peace Town,  a double set worth of material. Both covers and three self-penned numbers, all recorded live ...
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JOHN SMITH – Hummingbird (Commoner COMM01CD)

John Smith is a name I’ve been circling around for some time without actually hearing him so I was delighted when his new album, Hummingbird, his sixth, fell into my lap. I now have some serious catching up to do. If you haven’t encountered him yet you should know that ...
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SOLASTA – A Cure For The Curious (own label SLSTA18)

A Cure For The Curious is the debut album by the newest trio aiming to take folk music in new directions. Solasta are Elizabeth Flett; a multi-instrumentalist originally from Scotland, on fiddle: Jamie Leeming, a guitarist better known among the jazz fraternity and cellist Hannah Thomas, as much recognised in ...
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THE LARK AND THE LOON – Homestead Hands (own label)

She’s the lark and he’s the loon and The Lark And The Loon are multi-instrumental husband and wife duo Jeff Rolfzen and Rocky Steen-Rolfzen. Homestead Hands is a self-penned album, their second, packed with stories from the Black Hills to the Ozarks. Their songs are suffused with western lore and ...
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MAWKIN – Down Among The Dead Men (Good Form Records MKN005)

I was thinking that it was rather too long since I’d heard anything from Mawkin when David Delarre got in touch to ask if I’d like an advance copy of their new album. It would have been rude to refuse. In the three years since they released The Ties That ...
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Katie Spencer – in praise of live music

Saturday night I find myself in a church in a small village. This settlement is so tiny that to describe it as a small hamlet overstates it. The best part of fifty years ago I came here on an archeological dig to see if there really had been a Roman ...
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NATHAN BELL – Loves Bones And Stars, Love’s Bones And Stars (Angry Stick Recording Company)

In case you’re wondering, the title of the album is correct. Loves Bones And Stars, Love’s Bones And Stars is due for release on September 24th and is the fourth album in Nathan Bell’s Family Man series – and it’s rather good. The album is full of songs rather like ...
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Michael Chapman – autumn tour dates

Legendary guitarist and songwriter Michael Chapman first turned professional more than 50 years ago and he concludes another busy year of recording and playing concerts with a short UK tour. Michael Chapman first became known on the London and Cornish folk circuits in mid-1966. Playing a blend of atmospheric and ...
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RICHARD DURRANT – Stringhenge (Own Label, TheBurningDeck003CD)

JS Bach’s elaborate baroque isn’t necessarily folk’s obvious partner, but for guitarist Richard Durrant they are simply links in a lengthy musical chain. In his new album, Stringhenge, landscape and music are tightly bound, including in his instruments: a guitar made from 5000-year-old bog oak and a tenor guitar decorated ...
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A DIFFERENT THREAD – On A Whim (own label)

Originally a duo comprising Staffordshire’s Robert Jackson and North Yorkshire classical cellist Isaac Collier, last year they were joined by North Carolina songwriter and fiddle player Alicia Best, she and Jackson now the mainstays, although she remains based in the States. Following on from the High Time EP, on which ...
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NORTHERN FLYWAY – Northern Flyway (Hudson Records, HUD013)

This eponymous album from Northern Flyway is a beautiful addition to a rapidly growing body of music prominently featuring birdsong. Northern Flyway is Jenny Sturgeon and Inge Thomson’s new audio-visual project, featuring Magnus Robb’s bird recordings. Subtly drawing parallels with human migration and diversity, it’s also an alarm cry of ...
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DUSTER BENNETT – The Complete Blue Horizon Sessions (Floating World FLOATM6367)

Younger readers may need a heads up about Duster Bennett but a title like The Complete Blue Horizon Sessions should pique anyone’s interest. Duster was a star of then late sixties British blues revival, eschewing the electric directions taken by contemporaries such as Fleetwood Mac and Savoy Brown by performing ...
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TIA McGRAFF – Stubborn In My Blood (Bandana)

Her first full-length release since 2015 (though there was an EP last year), Stubborn In My Blood  is McGraff’s seventh album and again provides ample evidence of why she’s held in such high regard in Americana circles. Working as ever with husband Tommy Parham as co-producer/writer and guitarist, it kicks ...
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Larkin Poe announce new album and European tour dates

Larkin Poe have announced details of their new album Venom & Faith, to be released November 9. The Nashville-based sister duo have also announced a headline European tour in support of the new album, starting in London at Islington Assembly Hall on November 21 and taking in dates in Germany, ...
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Eddi Reader announces new album and October tour dates

Eddi Reader announces her brand new studio album Cavalier released worldwide on September 28 by Reveal Records. Featuring sixteen songs, including recently performed live favourites ‘Wonderful’, ‘My Favourite Dress’, ‘Starlight’ and ‘Maiden’s Lament’, the new album was recorded and produced in Glasgow, Scotland by Eddi Reader and John Douglas. Cavalier ...
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DAVID MILTON – Songs From The Bell Man (Story Records Strec1801)

Produced by and featuring Ange Hardy, this is the debut album by an affable chap from her home town of Watchet in Somerset who, in addition to running weekly shanty nights down the pub and being an established stone sculptor also serves as the local football referee and Punch and ...
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John Smith – new album and tour dates

John Smith talks about Hummingbird Ever since my teenage epiphany at the altar of folk music, hearing Nick Drake, Bert Jansch and John Renbourn for the first time, I have been a devotee. The six strings of my guitar have granted me access to a sacred space between things, the unconscious ...
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CHRIS THOMAS – Bound To The Ocean (own label)

Formerly part of a Pink Floyd tribute show, the soft-voiced Devon-based singer-songwriter has being flying solo since 2013, Bound To The Ocean being his debut album. Drawing on folk, country rock and blues influences, it opens with ‘Whenever I Sing Georgia’, a breezy early Van Morrison-ish tribute to his late step-mother, ...
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GRYPHON – ReInvention (own label GRIFCD01)

It has been a long time. Gryphon broke up in 1977 after recording Treason, which a lot of people seem to like but which I don’t particularly care for. Rumours started to emerge some eleven years ago and the band played a one-off gig at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in ...
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JIMMY ALDRIDGE & SID GOLDSMITH – Many A Thousand (MATRAI8001)

Rising stars of the UK acoustic scene, Aldridge and Goldsmith are what I guess those outside the fraternity would call finger in the ear folk music. That is to say they often sing unaccompanied with a stylised, emphatic delivery in the manner of the traditional folk singers of yore. But, ...
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Guitar virtuoso Richard Durrant – new album and tour dates

In his latest offering composer and guitar virtuoso Richard Durrant is once again living on the folk/classical cusp with the first of these two LPs featuring a collection of solo instrumentals.  The un-categorisable Durrant chose to record on a concert guitar crafted from a 5,000 year old English Oak by ...
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RICHARD THOMPSON – 13 Rivers (Proper Records PRPCD150)

Following three excursions into his back catalogue in a solo acoustic format, Richard Thompson is back doing the other thing he does best. Electric guitar in hand and backed by the other two members of his trio, Michael Jerome and Taras Prodaniuk, plus guitarist Bobby Eichorn he returns with 13 ...
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MIDNIGHT SKYRACER talk to Folking.com backstage at Cropredy 2018

Paul Johnson and Darren Beech catch up with Midnight Skyracer backstage at this years Fairport's Cropredy Convention. The interview took place on the Friday afternoon after their fantastic set earlier in the day. The girls have been nominated for an IBMA award by the International Bluegrass Music Association which is not surprising, as they ...
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GRACE PETRIE – Queer As Folk (own label)

The only time I saw Grace Petrie on stage, I was bowled over. I bought an EP and was impressed by that. Always her own person and doing things her way, Grace could now be on the verge of a breakthrough. Thanks to a Kickstarter campaign, Queer As Folk is ...
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Slow Moving Clouds announce their second album

Dublin-based band Slow Moving Clouds combine roots in the Irish and Nordic folk traditions with post-punk drones, baroque strings, and soaring falsetto vocals – creating an immersive, atmospheric sound, unlike anything you’ve heard before. Building on the success of their 2015 debut album Os, the group will release their highly ...
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The Shackleton Trio take their new album on tour

Following a busy summer of UK and European Festivals, The Shackleton Trio will be taking their new release on the road. The Shackleton Trio features fiddle player Georgia Shackleton alongside guitarist Aaren Bennett and mandolinist Nic Zuppardi. Together they play an exciting blend of folk, Americana, and self-penned material instrumentally ...
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BOB COLLUM AND THE WELFARE MOTHERS – Pay Pack And Carry (own label)

Bob Collum hails from Tulsa, Oklahoma but now lives in Essex – actually, we’re beginning to detect a pattern there. His band is Macs Leyton, Matthew Hall and Paul Quarry and there are a number of guests including Martin Belmont formerly of Ducks Deluxe, Graham Parker and Nick Lowe: Peter ...
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Will Varley talks to folking.com ahead of Autumn tour

Will Varley is touring the UK again this autumn, with the majority of the shows taking place in seated theatres and venues. Paul Johnson and Darren Beech caught up with Will backstage at this year's Fairport Convention's Cropredy festival. The interview took place early evening on the Saturday and half ...
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