Julian Weaver of Shreds & Patches 2007
reviews Dead Maid's Land by Paul Wilson & Marilyn TuckerOn first receiving this album I thought the title of the album - "Dead Maid's band" seemed a little ghoulish somehow but on reading the sleeve notes and listening to the CD I can assure everyone that it is anything but. The title song was also collected elsewhere by Cecil Sharp but he published it under the name of Seeds of Love.
As ever from Wild Goose the quality of the recording is excellent. It is a good varied work with a fine selection of songs and the sleeve notes are concise and informative. Importantly the singing is clear and distinct with fine harmonies. The accompaniment complements the singing; giving it a nice light touch with nothing overbearing that might detract from the song.
The friends help to move the music along but this is not surprising considering the talent involved - Chris Bartram; Chris Foster; Martin Graebe and Tim Laycock being amongst them. It is generous of Marilyn & Paul to pass the lead on some of the tracks to Tim. The inclusion of two instrumental pieces adds nicely to the variety.
I appreciate the couple of paragraphs on the back of the insert, especially the line "Because he was trying something new Baring-Gould did it his way and brought into his work all the prejudices and conceits that mark his character as well as the scholarly interest..." Not demeaning the fact that he "corrected" the words of songs he collected before publishing them but stating that that was the way of the man and of his time. Equally I appreciate that The Mower is the one from his manuscripts and not the "cleaned up" version.
My overall Lasting impression? It is a real pleasure to listen to.