Review Archive

'The Brightest Path' from Patsy Reid … ‘delicate, almost fragile melodies’

(January 23, 2014)


Patsy Reid the brightest path Describing Patsy Reid a fiddle player is a little like calling Renoir a painter … the description is correct but it leaves out so much. Her solo album 'The Brightest Path' combines some lesser known traditional Scottish melodies with some soon-to-be well-known self-penned tunes and contemporary songs that display only a fraction of her talent.

Patsy lays a soft touch that coaxes so much out of violin, viola and cello. As you listen you hear delicate, almost fragile melodies create a ‘living essence’, so elegant that when the notes fade only a tantalising memory remains. Listen to tunes like the dreamy ‘Hooray Henry’, the lingering elation of ‘Thugainn’ or the enchanting tapestry of ‘A Precious Place’ and you’ll understand. Although not known as a singer, a fact Patsy readily acknowledges, her pure vocals offer some luscious songs to savour such as the softly reflective 'The River Princes' or the simple reassurance of Kite Song'. 

'The Brightest Path' reflects that ‘living essence’ to the full. Recorded in the remote Crear on the west coast of Scotland, with a group of musicians that lend a scintillating dimension to Patsy’s music, there’s Ben Nicholls (double bass, harmonium) Ewan MacPherson (guitars, banjo, mandolin) Signy Jakobsdóttir (percussion) Mhairi Hall (piano) and Mattie Foulds (drums, vocals) plus Fraser Fifield (soprano saxophone, whistle). Intrigued by music as a living entity? 'The Brightest Path' is for you.

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Reviewer: Tim Carroll

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