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Dai Jeffries of R2

reviews National Youth Folklore Troupe of England by NYFTE

The National Youth Folklore Troupe Of England is about to celebrate twenty five years of helping ten to eighteenyear olds participate in traditional music, dance and song. Nyfte is actually their first record, launched at Chippenham Festival earlier this year.

There are thirty two members of the troupe on this album and there are one or two familiar surnames among the cast but this is very much an ensemble work. The majority of the tracks are dance sets and there are some nice touches: 'Sea Song Set' borrows from Vaughan Williams and is a good showcase for a big band, and as the members come from all over the country so do their musical borrowings.

I'm pretty sure that the best way to enjoy NYFTE is in a live setting they can put out as many dancers as they need covering the whole range of traditions. The songs are of lesser importance. Initially I wasn't keen on the choral style of 'Thousands Or More' but the high harmonies are awesome and the unidentified female singer on 'White Cockade' has a great future ahead of her. The album makes a good souvenir and the recording is a model of clarity but a vital dimension is missing a DVD next time?