Here we have traditional, English folk music possessing a rare sharp as a tack feel that transcends the norm. In keeping to the age-old style and tight as a drum vocal harmonies the trio of Sean Cooney (songwriter), David Eagle (keyboards, piano accordion) and Michael (guitar) simultaneously bring to the table a feeling that embraces with great affection times of a bygone age via new sublime lyrics and rare quality of singing.
Of those bygone days Cooney’s subjects include the old shipyards, the River Wear and of course Stockton (‘The Battle Of Stockton’) where Michael and Sean started out, singing at its folk club. Performed like it were 200 years old the biting, ‘The Chemical’s Working Song’ speaks of the plight of the rigidly ruled and an unhealthy work once predominate in their native region.
Sea Shanty ‘Roll Down’ is a full-bodied affair as many of their songs are. But never to the degree the album, their fourth in three years in any shape or form becomes predictable. Other than the fact the quality remains top class. On staying close to water and sailboats ‘Harbour Voice’ is a restrained affair that eases along as does the skip-a-long delight ‘Love In A Northern Town’ as imagery of the finest order appears.
As a way to mix up the music the boys also take a trip or two as they are found ‘Rolling Down To Rio’ and Europe in ‘Pique La Baleine’ as a gypsy feel develops. Another that sees them go in another direction is ‘You Can Close Your Eyes’ prior to them closing the album with ‘Jenny Waits For Me’. A beautiful sombre piece it sees a change in lead vocals as it speaks of how his darling Jenny waits for him in ol’ Hartlepool. While he is away at sea fishing its cruel, dark waters in the cold North Sea. If you are looking to hear great vocal harmonies; accompanied and otherwise then this little record is for you.
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