For a debut album, Anna Elias has gathered together some of the finest talents on the UK folk scene to help produce this 14 track disc; but one listen through and it’s obvious that this is an album that has been crafted and considered over time, and it’s presented here with real confidence.Built around the beautiful vocals of Anna Elias the whole album slots very comfortably into the UK contemporary folk scene, alongside the likes of Karine Polwart, Megson and Emily Smith, with a sound that feels modern, but with enough links to the tradition for the listener to know where the roots of the album lay.The beautifully elegant vocals are backed up by subtle arrangements of acoustic guitars, cello, bass, melodeon, percussion and some exceptional backing vocals – all this is added by a group of musicians that include Saul Rose, Karine Polwart and Will Pound.The lyrics and the melodies share equal billing as songs of landscapes and towns are delivered in tunes that feel timeless and familiar on the very first listen – this is an album of real charm and instant appeal, and the songs ‘Plough Song’ and ‘Where We Stand’ are real highlights in amongst an album of strong material.Anna Elias and the Forlorn Hope will be a new name to most, but this is an accomplished and high quality collection that really stands out from the crowd.
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This CD is a collection treasure with Bobby and Coco supporting each other vocally , instrumentally and emotionally. Whitlock’s “Roll On” has the qualities to make it a personal favorite like Bobby Charles’, “Tennessee Blues” or Donnie Fritts’, “We had it all”. CoCo’s vocals and sax on “Nobody Knows”, somehow finds a groove that is down and dirty while exquisite at the same time. By the time you get to the last track, “Changing Faces”, open the back door because you’ll need a cool breeze.