The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #85510   Message #1595070
Posted By: GUEST,Lea
01-Nov-05 - 12:41 PM
Thread Name: Review: Kate Rusby, Girl Who Couldn't Fly
Subject: RE: Review: Kate Rusby, Girl Who Couldn't Fly
Hi there,
I've been a big fan of Rusby from the start (seen her first with the Poozies many years ago). Still can remember how touching her "Neptune" was that evening...
I own every record of hers and made sure I got hold of "the Girl who couldn't fly" during the first week.
Being a musician myself I have quite a few things to say.
I find that the album takes a step further in the direction where she went with "Underneath the stars" regarding the arrangements. Her earlier albums had quite a few instrumentals between verses and featured the abilities of the "boys" (John Mc Cusker, Mike Mc Goldrick, Andy Cutting) more than the last two albums do.
For her it might be a good thing to do, because the focus is now all on her vocals and nothing distracts you from listening to the lyrics. But as a listener, I liked the instrumental parts and could do with more of it on the new tracks as well.
The other thing is, that I think her singing has -again- improved a a lot. I had a listen through "Hourglass" and "Sleepless" to compare sound and voice, and it's really a lot better. Both the singing and the recording quality.
So it is ok to have a focus on the vocals, cause they're good. But I am a bit disappointed of some of her self-penned lyrics. Moon Shadow for example - well I like songs that really tell a story or paint a picture of a certain mood and haunt me that way. But much as I lilted along the chorus of the song, I don't think Moon Shadow is as good as "Who will sing me lullabies" or "My young Man" - that was excellent work IMHO.
I like the brass and the strings on the album.
My favourites (musically) are
"Game of all fours", "Bonnie House of Airlie", "Wandering Soul" and "Jack Frost" the latter being the highlight of this recording for me :-). I like the singing on "The Lark" but I think it is not a strong composition and arrangement.
I think so far my favourite Rusby album is Little Lights, topped only by the live tracks on "10" and -of course- the DVD which brings out the best in this kind of music. Folk music is live music, and this woman and her band really do very well playing live. Groove, timing, intonation, phrasing - everything is outstanding on this DVD, it's really one of the top bands these days with first class musicians. And I include Mr Ian Carr into that. Of course I do. Imagine the Rusby albums and arrangements without his playing!!!!

So much for now.
(Molly, I think that's the kind of discussion you wanted, isn't it?)