No Man's Jig + Hanoverian Dance + Three Jolly Sheepskins
In London So Fair
Anglicana is Eliza's first solo recording for several years and re-focuses on her love of traditional and acoustic music. Eliza is a major recording artist, recording and working with the likes of Joan Baez and picking u... more »p a Mercury Prize Nomination for her album Red Rice. One of folk's biggest stars! 10 tracks. Topic Records. 2002.« less
Anglicana is Eliza's first solo recording for several years and re-focuses on her love of traditional and acoustic music. Eliza is a major recording artist, recording and working with the likes of Joan Baez and picking up a Mercury Prize Nomination for her album Red Rice. One of folk's biggest stars! 10 tracks. Topic Records. 2002.
"After her foray into popdom with "Angels and Cigarettes", Eliza Carthy has gone back to the English folk idiom with "Anglicana". This album is successful on almost every level, most importantly because Carthy has further honed her skills and folk sensibilities. Her fiddle playing is absolutely superb throughout and never threatens to dominate excessively. She is surrounded by some top-notch musicians (her Mum and Dad as well as Jon Speirs, Jon Boden, and Tim Van Eyken) and the result is a session of high-quality songs. One of the most impressive factors here, though is Carthy's voice. Whilst her voice does not possess the crystaline beauty of the great Maddy Prior or Kate Rusby, it has an honesty and expressiveness that sets it apart. Carthy's edgy singing calls to mind the older voices of Harry Cox and the early Cooper Family. It is quite a beautiful voice. Her rendition of "Just as the Tide Was Flowing" is sung brilliantly. The beauty of the singing is not only in the voice but also in the delivery and Carthy is a master of folksinging. Have a listen...you won't be dissappointd."
Rob Pulleyn | marshall, nc USA | 02/05/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Eliza could probably coast on the reputation of her mother and father, and some might argue that in some past recordings she has. I like to think she was just practicing for this outstanding album. Her voice is fantastic: clear, nimble, emotional, soaring, unique. Her arrangements are flawless, the backup musicians are perfect, even her backup singers (including her mother and father) are wonderful. But it's the songs themselves that set this effort apart from everything she's done. I've probably bought five copies of this CD to slip into friend's hands with a message of "try this, you won't be the same again."
If you're thinking of "trying out" Elliza Carthy, this is not only a perfect entry point, but you might want to buy a few; one for home, one for the car, and some for all those folks who haven't discovered this astounding singer."
Traditional English folk songs in a contemporary setting
Peter Durward Harris | Leicester England | 05/16/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Eliza Carthy, daughter of folk singers Norma Waterson and Martin Carthy, emerged in the late nineties as Britain's leading female folk singer. Eliza has always sought to bring a contemporary edge to her music, perhaps hoping in the process to get more people to take an interest in Britain's folk-song heritage. It is sometimes said that a great song will survive any interpretation, but adapting traditional songs written in an entirely different era when there was little or no backing music to a contemporary setting is no easy task. Nevertheless, Eliza has come up with an interesting and entertaining album that preserves the essence of each song. Listening to this album, nobody can be in any doubt that this is, at its heart, traditional folk music, even if it is updated slightly to appeal to listeners in the new millennium.
Eliza found many of the songs here on a twenty-volume series titled Voice of the people (released on Topic records, like this album). Folk music fans will find much of interest in that series, if they can afford it. To a wider audience, the best-known song here may be Just as the tide was flowing -10,000 Maniacs are among others to have recorded the song - but Eliza sings it her way and it's superb as all the songs here are. Among my other favorites here are Worcester City, Little gypsy girl, Bold privateer and Willow tree.
If you have any interest in traditional folk music, you should give this album a listen."
A new genre
Laurence Upton | Wilts, UK | 03/07/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Eliza Carthy boldly lays claim to a new genre with the inspired title of this beautiful album. It fits her music perfectly and needs no further explanation. Whereas she has in the past ironically sounded more dated when occasionally attempting more modern and experimental musical forms, her exploration of traditional material invariably sounds fresh and forward looking, and here she is again helped by a varied and fine collection of mostly acoustic musicians. Her affecting version of the old favourite Just As The Tide Was Flowing, revived by Shirley Collins with the Albion Band and by the American group 10,000 Maniacs amongst others, takes on an altogether more sombre and elegant timbre in its new reinvention, whilst many of the songs have been drawn from collections and archives, some brought to her by her father Martin Carthy, or Dr MCMBE, as an instrumental piece dedicated to him and on which he plays guitar is titled. Worcester City and Pretty Plowboy are two other highlights which seem to define what Eliza Carthy is all about. Although one of the themes of the album is Englishness there are, as she says, no border controls and one of the songs, In London So Fair, comes from the Irish singer Mary Ann Carolan, while some of the album was recorded in Edinburgh. In London So Fair was recorded on a Steinway, Eliza having switched from fiddle for the occasion, in a living room overlooking the sea, and you can almost hear the ocean in the atmosphere, so vivid is the recording (the sea being another of the main album themes). The lighthearted and jazz-tinted Willow Tree closes the album with a hint of new directions to come. A well balanced and mature album, and reassuring for the future of British folk music"
Rolling Stone review
Laurence Upton | 08/04/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Rolling Stone: One of 2002's best. Folk music survives because certain people use their imaginations to spin new gold from old straw. Carthy will keep the traditions alive for another century."