Ian Croft of R2
reviews Wight Cockade by The DollymoppsThe Dollymopps' second album further showcases traditional folksong from their native Isle of Wight. Virgil and Donna Phllpott
and Justin Smith sing unaccompanied three part harmony and bring to light songs that they have found locally or have local relevance. Some of the material comes unaltered from the source, but they're not averse to arranging and augmenting where appropriate.
Songs like 'The Gypsy Girl', 'British Man Of War' and 'All Jolly Fellows' are recognisable from more common English versions, but have different tunes or tweaked words that make these variants distinctive. Other songs such as 'On Gosport Beach' and 'The Isle Of Wight' are unlikely to be known elsewhere. The trio has also given tunes to a couple of Percy Stone's local dialect poems, 'The Recruiting Sergeant' and 'Newtown Randy', to form new songs.
The three voices are natural and unaffected, and produce a good blend for the harmonies, though if an album full of unaccompanied song fazes you, there is one instrumental track and one solo with guitar accompaniment to lighten the load. The Dollymopps are doing a grand job exposing little known material from the Isle of Wight, and Wight Cockade is an excellent example of their pioneering work.