The Alternate Root - Danny McCloskey
(“Featured Artists of the Week” for week commencing Friday, 6 July, 2012)
Sarah McQuaid pitches a folk tent in the campground of genre peers on The Plum Tree and The Rose. Vocally, Sarah offers warm resonance in her delivery, an intimacy that shares texture with artists such as Judy Collins, Odetta and Joni Mitchell on album tracks “The Sun Goes on Rising”, “Lift You Up and Let You Fly”, “So Much Rain” and “What Are We Going to Do”. Sonic comparisons to Sandy Denny and Maddy Pryor come to mind on “Hardwick’s Lofty Towers”, “In Derby Cathedral”, “Can She Excuse My Wrongs”, “Kenilworth”, “New Oysters New” and the title track, as Sarah treads the paths of old English folk ballads to track the ghosts in her rural England home. The Plum Tree and The Rose honors folk tradition from the British Isles through the Appalachian mountain range. Sarah McQuaid has a voice that captures air on the first note as it sails across jazz piano riffs and sparkling guitar work on her third album effort.