Reviews 2016

Woodman Folk Club - Reviews

Other Roads

Les Jones 11 March 2016

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When Bryn Phillips told me no one had written a review for Other Roads the last time they were with us in September 2014 I couldn’t believe it. Surely not. I remember it all very well. Thunderous applause; encores; Bryn calling them “Any Roads” in his introduction and the band calling him “Brian” all night in response. I’d swear I could remember slaving over a hot keyboard to write it, but when I looked on the website he was right – nothing. With advancing age, I have become used to forgetting things that did happen, but, making up things that didn’t? Shows I think how good they were and it was to be no different this time.

Three superb musicians Pete Abbot; Dave Walmisley and Gregor Boland who between them play guitars, mandolin, fiddle and what the luthier who made it Ken Powell calls a Gazouki? Oh and at one point an iPod – of more later. They are not afraid to say that they are all close friends and it certainly shows during their performance. A dry humour which conveys itself through the numerous stories they tell of their travels and travails (Get that – well I thought it was good) – mainly in Germany it seems, even to telling jokes in German. “Gibt es ein Ende zu allen Dingen aber die Wurst hat zwei“ – so there. German humour.**

They have a new cd on sale and several of the songs from it were spread throughout the two sets. They began with the Dave Walmisley favourite Lighthouse followed by another of Dave’s songs Bonny Braid this one from the new cd and Past The Point of Rescue – an oldie from the days of the John Wright Band. The Raiders was followed by a Gregor Boland fiddle tune Cloudy Rooms - written for a couple who were kind to the band when they were playing – you guessed it – in Germany. Their only fault was that they smoked incessantly and would not allow the windows to be opened, so the band lived in a fog fpr a while. The couple loved the tune but did not realise the irony of the title. No irony in German humour. The first set finished with I’ll Never Find The Words – new; The Raven and a particular favourite of mine – The Fisherman’s Knife. We then all adjourned for what Pete described as a Retail Opportunity. Little did he know that we were all waiting to see if we won the new cd in the raffle first.

The second half began with the raffle and of course 99.99% of us didn’t win the cd so we had to wait until the end of the performance to buy one for ourselves. It began with an old Risky Business song Gone and the fiddle tune Rochemaure Downpour – both on the new cd – as was the next Rosemary’s Garden. Any Port In A Storm was followed by The Island Set - three lovely fiddle tunes from Gregor. Pete asked if anyone knew who had written their next song London Road. When half the room said Eddy Morton he realised we did. So when they played it we all joined in. Autumn Years featured Gregor on iPod. In fact on the cd the song has a piano part which was not possible to perform live so they cleverly played the cd piano track through an iPod. It worked very well. The old Show of Hands song Galway Farmer with audience participation during the cheering section was the final listed song before Windy Harbour finished the night as an encore. And yet another retail opportunity which we all took advantage of this time.

Local acts Barry and Corrine – Dick Woodhouse and Bryn Phillips provided the start to each half. As usual a wonderful time was had by all.

** All things have an end but a sausage has two. **

Gute nacht.