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Saturday, 22nd July 2017
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Heidi Talbot: Angels Without Wings Album Review

North West Folk music clubs picJerry Douglas, Tim O’Brien, Julie Fowlis,  King Creosote, Karine Polwart, Dirk Powell, Louis Abbott (Admiral Fallow) , Boo Hewerdine, Phil Cunningham, Michael McGoldrick, Donald Shaw, Mark Knopfler, Ian Carr, Ewan Vernal, James Mackintosh, Richard Bennett, Guy Fletcher.

That isn’t the cast of a compilation CD. Instead it’s a list of the artists who guest on Angels Without Wings, the latest album from Heidi Talbot. On this collection of mainly original songs, Talbot collaborates on the writing with King Creosote, Tim O’Brien, Boo Hewerdine, Louis Abbott & John McCusker.

With those things in mind, you’d expect the end result to be impressive.  It is.

Like several others of her generation Talbot moves from material influenced by traditional folk to Americana – and she does so seamlessly, aided by John McCusker’s clever production. There are enough musical layers to maintain interest long after the initial listening, yet Talbot’s distinctive voice stays at the forefront throughout.

The variation in tone and pace is striking too.  From fairground waltz on the title track, through the Celtic drama of Dearest Johnny, to the toe-tapping Will I Ever Get to Sleep, before moving on to When the Roses Come Again, a soothing country duet with Tim O’Brien who is in fine form.  The harmonies on the latter track are sublime.

This is an early contender for folk album of the year and it may prove to be a significant milestone in the career of Heidi Talbot.  Now go and buy it.  It’ll do you good.


Heidi Talbot

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