Review | Songlines

twelvemonth and a day

Rating: ★★★

View album and artist details

Album and Artist Details

Artist/band:

Wolf & Clover

Label:

Wolf & Clover

May/2022

Based in Columbus, Georgia, this sextet boasts three professors, a music academy director, doctoral candidate and orchestra executive in its line-up. Their sophomore studio album, twelvemonth and a day, follows 2018’s eponymous debut and 2020’s Live at the Silvan Sessions EP. It’s more of the same – traditional and new tunes glossed with a free-flowing sense of ensemble sparking with ideas even if never quite managing to flare into full flame. They are at their best on ‘The Columbus Set’, the driving set of reels opening the disc, in the lithe re-working of ‘O’Carolan’s Farewell to Music’ and the lilting ‘The Suitor Set’, where Jessica Bennett-French’s fiddle is laced with a telling Appalachian twang. Vocalist Michelle DeBruyn brings a husky otherness to ‘An Rógaire Dubh’ and channels Judy Collins in ‘The Unquiet Grave’ but renders Van Morrison’s ‘Into the Mystic’ somewhat earthbound. Others may well be able to hear it in the music, but I miss the experimentation and any sense of ‘push[ing] the boundaries of the traditional Celtic style’ claimed in publicity.

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