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M Everett of Mardles

reviews Ingleneuk by Hector Gilchrist

This is quite simply a gorgeous album. Curl up in front of a blazing fire with a wee dram and lose yourself in the music.

Hector Gilchrist may be known to you as a fine exponent of the songs of Robert Burns and a half of the duo, Selkie. In which case, you know what to expect and you will not be disappointed; if anything, your expectations will be exceeded. If Hectors name is new to you, youre in for a rare treat.

The album has a well balanced mix of traditional and contemporary songs. The material includes two fine songs from the poems of Violet Jacob, the Robert Burns song, Corn Riggs, and two covers of Janis Ian songs. There is also a couple of personal favourites. Ive known Stan Rogers song, Lock-keeper, for many years from the singing of Marie Little. This version is just as good. Last Trip Home from the pen of the late Davy Steele is another favourite, again given Hectors gentle but powerful treatment.

A delightful surprise was to find Hector being accompanied throughout by Vicki Swan and Jonny Dyer. This combination works so well together that I hope we see them performing regularly, or even occasionally, as a trio. Steve Poole on guitar and Paul Sartin on fiddle and oboe also support Hector on some tracks.

If ever an album fitted Shakespeares quote of if music be the food of love, play on this is it. Sit back, relax and listen.