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MIRANDA SYKES - Behind The Wall 

MIRANDA SYKES - Behind The Wall 
Private Label 

I guess most of us know the work of Miranda Sykes with Show Of Hands, Robb Johnson and others. This CD is a return to her roots. As she says on her website: “one woman, one bass, one guitar”. It is a delight. How can you not look forward to a CD where the first words on the inside cover are: “This album was recorded live in my front room in Totnes.”

Some of these songs are sung a cappella; some with a simple but very effective acoustic guitar accompaniment; some with voice and double bass (you don’t hear that combination too often, if at all, but trust me when I say it really works). This collection is a pretty raw and personal view of the world and where it might be going, featuring covers of excellent songs from the likes of Richard Shindell (Fishing), Steve Tilston (Running Out Of Road), Karine Polwart (Better Things) and others, though none from the pen of Miranda herself - I wonder why? If there is one song I keep coming back to, it is the opening track, Lincolnshire Changes, which is credited to Penny Sykes. I’m not sure what the family connection is but I would like to hear more from her pen. This collection forms the basis of a show that Miranda will be touring in spring 2019. I hope to get to see it. I want to know more about the story behind this choice of songs.

Philip Thomas

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This album was reviewed in Issue 128 of The Living Tradition magazine.