Cruising along the A77, top down, towards the beach, these upbeat, Sunday driving tunes filled me with gladness. OK, so it’s February and I drive a Polo, but the feeling remains the same. From the outset - Innes’s funky ‘Prelude to Sandy’, through the seamless segue into track 2 - you know this album will not disappoint.
I have often come to find that the treasure is buried at track 3 and ‘Feds’ is no exception, mellifluous, golden chord changes and a depth of tune-making that will fill your soul with sunshine even on a cold February day.
There are some extremely accomplished players on this album and the sound quality is well above par.
From what I can glean from the copious cover notes (yes I have the actual physical CD and yes it is better) the Colloquium was written, in part, as a New Voices commission for Celtic Connections as long ago as 2011, but the music has lost nothing in the interim. The notes for track 5 (Udon Noodle) made me smile: an apology on behalf of all noodling guitarists, everywhere - a lovely, self-effacing touch.
By the end of track 10 we are entering serious funk-folk territory and ‘The Wee Dafty’ is a gentle wee tune that morphs dangerously into a quite filthy hornpipe.
Innes tips his hat to the wide array of tremendous players on the Glasgow scene in recent years (2000-2015), many of whom have gone on to become some of Scotland’s most respected contemporary folkies and producers. I am also delighted to have lived through such a vivid, creative (and often drunken and hilarious) period and the best of it is, I don’t think we are finished yet.
I tend to find fully instrumental albums a little boring (which is a wholly personal thing, being a singer to trade) however this is nothing of the sort.
Get it in your ears!