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THE DOVETAIL TRIO - Bold Champions 

THE DOVETAIL TRIO - Bold Champions 
Records GRR009 

This a delightful and refreshing CD. The trio blend well and the story-telling is exemplary. The best voice is undoubtedly Rosie Hood’s, although the boys (Jamie Roberts and Matt Quinn) are not far behind. They also contribute guitar and duet concertina. Together this allows for a wide range of arrangements. Against the voices, the concertina is often too far forward in the mix while the guitar is submerged throughout. The vocal intonation is perfect and, delightfully, not always tempered! The harmonies are not necessarily what one might expect, and occasionally detract from the story, although tunes such as Death And The Lady are notoriously difficult to harmonise. The title track, Bold Champions, is set to Rosie’s own tune and follows the model of so many ‘big fight’ songs – perfect!

The background research that has gone into this selection of traditional songs is apparent – these are interesting versions which may not be too familiar to many listeners, and the sleeve notes on the triple fold card cover are concise and detailed. The decision to record the album all together in one room means that it retains all the energy and vitality of a live performance (the bonus track – Four And Twenty Fiddlers - is actually recorded in front of a live audience) and none of the exaggerated carefulness which so often diminishes the glory of some other groups’ recordings. The songs and their arrangements are straightforward and honest and without affectation. This album belongs in the collection of anyone who seriously enjoys traditional song, well sung and thoughtfully arranged.

Tom Brown


This review appeared in Issue 129 of The Living Tradition magazine