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WHILE & MATTHEWS - "The Best of…"

WHILE & MATTHEWS - "The Best of…"
Circuit Music Ltd. FATCD017

Okay – all back to my house for a genuine selection of some of the best British contemporary acoustic songs of the last ten years, conveniently packaged on a single CD.  This is no fluke.  Our top two lady songwriters with an ultimate collection of their collective story so far – the delicate Thorn Upon The Rose in a rare version (on two solo voices with guitars [less is more in this case, believe me]) Piecework with Ken Nicol’s superb lead guitar break; the stunning declaration of love for an ill sibling (Steady Breathing).  This CD has more peaks than Derbyshire. Background music, or loud as you like, alone or with kindred spirits.  Whatever, they deserve top marks for this selection.  Well produced and packaged with all the lyrics too – sadly lacking in most such collections these days, this a total experience.  This pair, quite probably, are the most underrated duo in the UK by a folk and country mile, and all we can do is hope that first class albums like this will one day give them the peer plaudits they clearly deserve. Sixty five minutes of strategically targeted emotion, on occasions more derivative than definitive, sometimes raw but always cookin’, oft times brutally honest, but always pitched right.  Even the tongue in cheek Class Reunion warrants inclusion as a contrast to the bigger subjects covered on tracks such as Generation Game (domestic abuse) and Seven Years(redundancy).  Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy…

Grem Devlin

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This album was reviewed in Issue 72 of The Living Tradition magazine.