MATT NORMAN - Eight Days Late

MATT NORMAN - Eight Days Late
Wren Music Wren CD007

This release has the sub-title of 'English Music for Mandolin' and that's what you get, along with a couple of appearances of a five-course mandola, once from Paul Wilson. Matt is a skilful mandolinist, with some individual techniques which allow him to play multiple strings to give even more variations on the normal mandolin range. Mind you, one might expect something different from anyone who admits being musically influenced by J.S. Bach and Jimi Hendrix!

This is a cracking compilation of well-researched traditional pieces and own compositions; the whole album has a relaxed feel about it, with all of the sets complementing the others to give cohesion throughout. The playing is both melodic and intricate, so that it is worth playing the CD through a few times, as there are subtleties which may have been missed first time round.

The publishers, Wren Music, are Devon's folk and community arts development organisation. If this is an example of what such bodies can produce, then perhaps other areas should get in touch with them to find out how to do it properly. This CD is a credit to the area, to the production team, to Matt, and of course to the mandolin.

Gordon Potter

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This album was reviewed in Issue 69 of The Living Tradition magazine.