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Martyn Wyndham-Read & No Man's Band "Where Ravens Feed
Songs By Graeme Miles"
Fellside Recordings FECD157

This is an old fashioned idea - that a CD should be produced by collecting top quality songs and then performing them to the best of your ability, using accompaniments to enhance and point the song, rather than just for its own sake. Martin Wyndham-Read is a virtuoso singer with a superb voice, but his technique is always at the service of the song - there's no 'flash'. Likewise the excellent and sensitive No Man's Band (Iris Bishop: concertina and accordion, Bob Winquist: fiddle, Gary Holder: bass) who provide excellent accompaniments, all complemented by Paul Adams and Iris Bishop's exemplary production. The songs are all by Graeme Miles, who has built a vernacular song tradition for Teesside and whose songs have been recorded before by Martin as well as by others such as the Wilson Family and Vin Garbutt. The selection on this CD are in much the same rhythm and pace, pensive and atmospheric, where even shafts of humour are tinged with melancholy. Consequently, this is not an album which I would regularly play straight through. Taken in groups though, the songs and their performances are deeply satisfying and this is an album to which I expect to return with pleasure for years to come.

Paul Burgess

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This album was reviewed in Issue 44 of The Living Tradition magazine.