Brona Mc Vittie reviews Mayday
Lady Maisery’s album Mayday – a subtle take on feminist folk – starts out with a great version of Sydney Carter’s Crow on the Cradle revealing the band’s ability to effectively blend dark and light. While a little down-tempo to begin with, the music gets more upbeat by the fourth track, Katy Cruel. Their 6-minute a capella take on Lady Maisry stays true to the folk-club tradition, although I wonder if it could benefit from some of the treatment they give to other songs like the Factory Girl, which plays on a more thoughtful arrangement imbued with tasteful production that evokes an atmosphere in support of the story being told. A question of taste no doubt. I really love their diddling on Constant Billy and the shift to a more driving tempo on The Lie of the Land. This and track ten, labelled only Intro, could perhaps have been brought in a little earlier on the album. And we have to wait a while for the harp and fiddle – a great combination of forces – to get together on Grey Selkie, another track that effectively uses production techniques to enhance their interpretation. I’m a huge Kate Bush fan, and take my hat off to their version of This Woman’s Work. No mean feat. Overall, in terms of the musical arrangement, I’d like to hear their individual voices a little more, a greater range in vocal dynamics across a song, and a good deal more of their very talented instrumentation on future albums. All in all, the group successfully showcases all that is beautiful in English folk music, and I suspect their live show will not disappoint. Girl power!
for more info on Lady Maisery: http://www.ladymaisery.com/