‘The Frozen North’ from Loreley - one foot in tradition the other on innovation(February 14, 2017)
The latest album from Loreley is ‘The Frozen North’ a collection of traditional folk lyrics added to fresh tunes composed Simon James Chisholm (guitar, mandolin, dulcitar, concertina) and sung by Maddy Glenn (vocals, percussion, whistles). According to the press release, the band was “... formed as a project with the aim of exploring archives of mostly-forgotten folk songs in order to breathe new life into them.” Well having listened to ‘The Frozen North’ I’d say they have achieved their objective.
The songs may well be familiar to some and evoke a vague memory in others, whichever is the case, most have either new music allied to the lyrics or are arranged in a distinctive way that blends heritage with contemporary. The combination of Chisholm’s intricate, involving and sometimes 'break-neck' playing and Glenn’s connecting folk vocal, occasionally lost in the speed of delivery, with their distinctive approach to folk gives this album one foot firmly placed in tradition the other on the steps of innovation.
The songs range from ‘Blow Northern Wynd’ and a faintly recognisable ‘The Storm in The Holy Ground’ to ‘The Oak and The Ash’ and a frenetic version of ‘Ilkley Moor Baht’at’ – keep up if you can.
‘The Frozen North’ releases on 27 March 2017.
Review: Charlie Elland