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THE POOZIES - Into The Well

THE POOZIES - Into The Well
Schmooz Records SCHMOOZCD002

Over 20 years well-set, the present iteration of the soi-disant ‘first ladies of fusion’, today as live tourists apparently fuelled by copious amounts of Prosecco(!), have produced another fine wellspring of music charged with emotion and energy.

Eilidh Shaw (fiddle), Sally Barker (guitar), Mairearad Green (accordion) and Mary Macmaster (harps) collectively share vocal duties including, of course, more of those well-beloved harmonies. The 10 tracks embrace several tune sets (trad./arr., self-penned and from others, including two tightly woven, characteristically colourful pieces by Karen Tweed), with typically clever segueing and wide dynamic compass, some Gaelic singing and a brilliant choice of stirring songs – a deeply and creepily atmospheric rendition of Andrew Peter Griffiths’ unsettling Southern Cross about a Second World War German piratical ‘ship of the damned’, the bitter-sweet Absurdist charm of Darling/Dalling’s Small Things In The Cupboards about the fate of impedimenta hoarded in ‘the cupboards of monogamy’, and the chilling oblivion of Sally Barker’s wronged Ghost Girl.

Whether the electro harp’s low-end warmly pulsing rhythmic bass frequencies or plucked high-end tinkling and teeming sounds, propulsive rhythmic guitar, or the serpentine intricacies of their accordion and fiddle work, the music is richly varied, alive with dynamic gear changes, tempos, moods and, above all, a winsome catchiness, often hypnotic in its lure. Uniquely gelling, both vocally and instrumentally, in their mutual musical conversation and melodic movement, drawing freely on the ‘enticements’ of many genres of music, their wide musical intelligence and ingenious interplay remain instantly recognisable and distinctively original.

Kevin T. Ward

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This album was reviewed in Issue 108 of The Living Tradition magazine.