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Private Label WJ002 

Wayward Jane are among Scotland's leading exponents of what might be loosely termed as Americana. On the evidence of this, their second album, they can cut it with anyone working in that genre. From the first bars of the well-known traditional song, Hills Of Mexico, with its meaty bass to draw you in, to the concluding Sheep In A Stubble Field, which can best be described as transatlantic mouth music, they show a feel for the different strands of the Scots-American music they include.

The band visits the blues on Son House's County Farm and on the quirky Gillian Welch/ Dave Rawlings number, Elvis Presley Blues, but at other times their points of reference are in bluegrass. That is where the Appalachian banjo of Michael Starkey comes into its own. The other members of this foursome are Rachel Walker (fiddle), Dan Abrahams (double bass) and Sam Gillespie (woodwinds). Between them, they also bring in a distinctly jazzy tinge, as well as contributing to the composition of five tracks.

Unless you happen to have crossed Wayward Jane’s path already, this could be an unexpected treat.

Dave Hadfield