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Joan Crump of Properganda

reviews Won't You Come Away by Maggie Boyle

Perhaps best known in recent years as part of the female vocal harmony trio Grace Notes, Maggie doesn't seem to get as many opportunities these days to showcase her considerable solo talents. Happily, Won't You Come Away gives her a superb platform for exploring a range of enchanting songs.

Maggie delves into her Irish heritage with classic songs like The Spinning Wheel, Donal Og and Moorlough Mary. Her vocal style is well suited to the Irish material, with breaks and ornamentation that seem influenced by previous generations of source singers without being so pronounced as to distract from the loveliness of the songs. She also handles very capably some classic English songs such as the ineffably beautiful Linden Lea, and even has a bit of a bluesy rock-out on her son Joe's Liza and Henry.

Vocally the album is very self assured with a stylistic strength and depth which may have influenced some of the current generation of young female singers who eschew breathy prettiness for passion. Accompaniment is stellar, with the likes of John Boden, Steve Tilston and Paul Downes lending classy arrangements.