JAYWALKERS – 16 Miles

The sawing phrase that opens ‘Lonesome Fiddle Blues’ grabs your attention from the moment the disc hits the player and you’re right to suspect that you’re in for a treat. Michael Giverin and Jay Bradberry were BBC Young Folk Award finalists in 2009 but probably too far from the mainstream to actually win.

They play a blend of folk and bluegrass with fiddle, mandolin and guitar as the lead instruments mixing original and traditional material with some judiciously chosen covers. The sound is full but open enough to hear every detail and is supported by Lucy Williams on bass. Jay has possibly the strongest young female voice I’ve heard in years – and I speak as one tired of breathy little-girl voices – and her attacks on ‘Wayfaring Stranger’ and Gillian Welch’s ‘Caleb Meyer’ could blister paint. Superb. Michael’s songs provide a gentle contrast, in style at least, for ‘Delphi Lodge’ tells a harsh tale.

This is a really good debut album, hand-made on the Jaywalkers’ own label, which you can also hear free on Spotify. What are you waiting for?

Dai Jeffries

Artist Web link: www.jaywalkers.co.uk


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