28 January 2015
Album review – Walking Into White. “An original fusion of jazz and folk ... that sounds like the journey of a vintage bourbon through a long winter night.”
Walking Into White
At times resolutely folk in the most traditional way and at others bathing in some undeniably Jazz sounds and arrangements, Sarah McQuaid’s new album Walking Into White will not stand in the background. The production makes it noticeable, the CD sometimes sounding like vinyl strutting its imperfections to filter the superficial listeners. This is very much musicians entertaining their sensitivities and toying and warming their muses on colder winter hours. McQuaid’s vocals fit perfectly in the constant contretemps of counter-harmonies and have the quality required for the chosen instrumentation, breathing their rawness over the waves. Of all the tracks, “Yellowstone” is the quieter, subtly incorporating some Spanish airs to accompany a more toned down leading vocal, possibly to lift the introspective lyric. Of all the fusions and introductions of Jazz, “The Silver Lining” is the track that best captures the rhythm it embarks on, especially with a lyric that takes its listener by the hand. All in all, this album sounds like it has been fun to make and with background notes talking directly to you and me, and a cover of Ewan MacColl’s classic “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” thrown in, it might just be what the ear looking for an original fusion of jazz and folk was looking for: an arranged marriage that sounds like the journey of a vintage bourbon through a long winter night.