Friday, December 25, 2009


BEST GIG – Zeitgeist Zero’s album launch at Subculture was without doubt the most memorable and unique of all “live” gigs I attended during this year (Reviewed on this site 12th April)

BEST MALE SOLO CD – “The Busker” by Roger Davies is an album with everything the discerning listener could wish for (Reviewed on this site 31st October)

BEST FEMALE SOLO CD – Angie Shaw’s “The other side of blue” allowed Angie to showcase her superb vocals and song-writing abilities (Reviewed on this site 15th July)

BEST BAND CD – A tough call but Harrogate-based Hargreaves with their “Sooner but not later” CD just edged many other great albums with its variety, well balanced lyrics and musicianship (Reviewed on this site 12th February)

BEST EP – A winner by a country mile was the awesome EP “A New Morning” by the London-based “The Croshaw Family”. The impact they create in the space of five tracks is unbelievable and confirmed them as UK’s answer to the American Carter family

BEST SOLO DVD – Abi Moore’s rise to prominence amongst female singer-songwriters is clearly evident with her exceptional “live” DVD at Lincoln Drill Hall.

BEST COMPILATION DVD – Cool Acoustics “Acoustic Selection Box” is a wonderful showcase of seven of the many talented acts to have graced the Cool Acoustics promotions in 2009 (Reviewed on this site 8th October)

MOST INNOVATIVE ALBUM OF 2009 – Shaun T Hunter and the Quite Rebellion album “Thinnest Hope Magnified” which will be the forefront of some incredible ground-breaking projects during 2010.

FEEL-GOOD FACTOR AWARD – The monthly Sunday Service gig at the Verve in Leeds wins this award, due to the unbelievable friendliness and warmth generated each month by organiser Barnaby Aldrick, the musicians playing, but most importantly the supporters of this truly wonderful night each month, feeling down? then get yourself to the Sunday Service in 2010.

Saturday, December 12, 2009


Very few “live” albums capture both the quality of the lyric-writing and musical prowess on show, however The Big Fat Kill’s first CD, “Down at the Junction” bucks that trend as the energy of a “live” performance is entwined with the highly professional and crafted lyrics, which makes this album stand out from the crowd. The album contains songs of poignancy to songs which will have audiences accompanying in the choruses, but with far more lyrical substance than a sing-a-long set of songs, these are songs of strength and crafted to perfection. Each band member Jon Palmer (Guitar,Vocals), Tom Cassidy (Bass, Backing vocals), Jeremy Bradford (Piano) and Paul Milek (Drums) shines throughout the album, where no-one is more dominant that the other, and consequently produces a collective musical sphere of the highest echelon.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009



When the winner’s of the Best Group award at both the 2008 and 2009 BBC Folk awards ceremonies arrive in town, you know something very different is to be witnessed. The return to Leeds for the three-piece Scottish-based band was greeted with excited anticipation at the wonderfully appointed Brudenell Social Club. With a performance starting with some entertaining Jigs, the audience of all ages, were carried along on a wave of original musicianship of the grandest order throughout the evening. It is very easy to see why Kris Drever (Guitar and Vocal), Martin Green (Piano Accordion) and Aidan O’Rourke (Fiddle) are regarded by many as the finest exponents of their genre for a very long time. The mood of the compositions changes, but the enjoyment and entertaining banter between the musicians added even more to the performance. With an intense playing style coupled with expressive freedom, if that’s not a contradiction in terms, this was a very special nights entertainment which will live long in the memories of all who attended yet another impressive and well-organised event by Hee-Haw Promotions.

Katriona Gilmore and Jamie Roberts

The sensational evening’s entertainment started with the outstanding duo of Katriona Gilmore and Jamie Roberts. The mercurial talents of both musicians will surely see them performing at many of the big Folk Festivals on a regular basis, for many years to come. Katriona (Violin, Mandolin and vocals) and Jamie (Guitar and vocals) produced a mesmerizing performance of both traditional and original work, which set the stage perfectly for the magnificent trio from Scotland. With an announcement of a UK tour planned for next year, this talented duo should soon be receiving the critical plaudits their talents deserve.

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