The first 6 months of the year – my favourite releases so far

Well, I confess there has been rather a longer pause than I’d planned in adding to my blog of favourite releases from the first 6 months of 2016. Perhaps starting a new website had something to do with my tardiness. Anyhow, this is the continuation of the blog I started on Google’s blogger.

Blair Dunlop – Gilded 

My friend Nick Baker who is a massive music fan, gig-goer extraordinaire and a fantastic supporter of my radio adventures was kind enough to pick me up a copy of Gilded at a Blair gig earlier in the year. I’d heard Blair sing alongside Larkin Poe on the Killing Time EP and played tracks from that on the Quiet Revolution. I’d also been lucky enough to see him play as part of the new Albion Band alongside Kat Gilmore of the ace Gilmore Roberts and formerly of the band Tiny Tin Lady, who I interviewed in my early days of the Quiet Revolution at the Musician in Leicester, but I digress.

My thoughts on first listen to Gilded were, what a fantastic album this is. Blair is on top form and there are some superb songs on this albums. Some I’ve played on the show and writing this reminds me I really should dig into the album and play another song or two on an upcoming show.

In the meanwhile here’s one of my current favourites from Gilded.

Maz O’Connor – The Longing Kind

Like Blair is an extremely talented, young singer songwriter on the contemporary folk scene. The first song I came across from Maz was quite a few years back and called London Lights. The Longing Kind is album number three from Maz and The Guardian have described it as offering “shadows, light and touch of Joni Mitchell”. Further acclaim from Bright Young Folk who refer to The Longing Kind as “an enormously accessible album whose depths become more apparent with each listen”. I’d concur with both of those reviews.

If you enjoy The Longing Kind I’d also strongly recommend you investigate the Sweet Liberties album which I will blog about at later date. Maz and Martyn Joseph, Sam Carter and Nancy Kerr are all involved in this album. I’ve been playing lots of tracks from it on the show. But here’s Maz from The Longing Kind.

Adam Beattie – The Road Not Taken

I’ve probably said before that there are a range of ways in which I come to discover new artists and bands who I end up enjoying the music of and playing on air. The fine singer songwriter Trevor Jones who puts out excellent music solo as Jones (check out Happy  Blue which is one of my previously blogged about favourite releases of 2016 too) pointed me in the direction of Adam Beattie’s beautiful music.

The Road Not Taken is Adam’s fourth album. Adam is a Scottish singer songwriter who I’d suggest has folk and jazz influences, amongst others. The songs on this album are supremely good and I would venture that if you enjoy the music of Blue Rose Code, Kris Drever and Adam Holmes and the Embers you’d most likely find much to like in Adam Beattie’s music. The Road Not Taken is an album you’ll just keep going back to. Here’s a track from it to whet your musical appetite further.


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