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Jerry Bix of Whats Afoot

reviews The Island of Apples by Mick Ryan & Pete Harris

THE ISLAND OF APPLES Mick Ryan & Pete Harris WGS 339CD
LIVE FROM THE MAC Last Night's Fun LNF Records LNFRO06
Two very different CD's; but with so much in common. Both are arguably among the best of their genre performing in the UK (which is why we have booked both for Bideford Folk Festival!) Both CD's are consistently excellent, so if you are already a fan then I can guarantee you will be delighted. Both in concert have reduced me to gasping for breath with laughter at their between?song banter and repartee.

In performance and on this CD Mick Ryan's voice alongside Pete Harris' sweet harmonies and rhythmic musical arrangements provide a perfect setting for his powerful, thought?provoking songs. Songs with tunes full of unusual turns and corners and words that evoke the full range of emotions sorrow, joy, pride, anger, regret and affection. Here we have seven of Mick's own songs, many from his folk plays, alongside the traditional Cupid's Garden and The Banks of the Bohn. In addition there are two of my favourite Graham Moore songs - Tolpuddle Man and Tom Paine's Bones and the powerful The Labourer's Cause from Mick's collaboration with Graham Moore. The Song Goes On written for a Sidmouth concert in memory of Cyril Tawney reminds us why we sing ? so that "the singers who have gone before us will be singing once again".

Two fabulous CD's - buy them both - or better still see them in concert and then buy their CD's.