This review is written by Kevin McCarthy, 6/03
"Kevin and Maxine’s Celtic & Folk Music Reviews"
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Some artists are fortunate and bask in fame and riches. Some, whose work is discovered too late, receive their just rewards post-mortem. Others, just as talented, plow forward with their unshakable calling, but in veritable financial and artistic obscurity. My educated guess is Dave and Julie Evardson fall into the latter category. Neither will perform anytime soon for the Queen nor will they funnel any largess into off-shore bank accounts. Here's hoping I'm wrong.
The Evardsons are performers based in Lincolnshire, England--which would be called a county here in the States. Dave Evardson is the songwriter of the duo. The primary motif of this release depicts disappearing ways of life and the loss-spurred travels and travails of such individuals. He covers bits of past and present Lincolnshire, plus working life in the fishing industry, the downside of industrialization and globalization, plus a touch of humor.
"Thrown It All Away," "The Forty Thieves," "The Fitter On The Shore," "A Westerly," "The Storm of '53" and "The Grand Old Ladies" in one way or the other recite the good and the bad of the fishing profession. Evardson is to the maritime what many others have been to coal mining--humanizing his subjects through the use of depth and characterization.
The title cut, "A Ramble On The Viking Way," is a curative creation, offering an affordable antidote to displeasing events and situations. "Bumper To Bumper," though about the serious and universal problem of gridlock, will generate smiles. With repeated references to the sweet, spotted dick, "Roly Poly" will incite the lascivious.
What is most remarkable about this release featuring 14 offerings is the lack of a weak or throwaway cut. Evardson's writing ranks with anyone else in this genre in the U.K. The Spice Girls or Sting may not be picking up these tunes anytime soon, but that's okay. We have them and my hunch tells me that's just fine with the Evardsons. Pride before riches. The Evardsons have plenty of which to be proud.
This release features spare backing--accordion and guitar at most. The worse that can be summoned is that the lyrics are not included in the liner notes, although both Evardsons enunciate clearly in their singing.
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