Child Ballads
 
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Child Ballads

11 Feb 2013 | Format: MP3

£5.29 (VAT included if applicable)
Song Title
Time
Popularity  
30
1
5:51
30
2
6:18
30
3
6:43
30
4
4:42
30
5
5:50
30
6
3:32
30
7
6:46

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Product details

  • Label: Wilderland Records
  • Copyright: (C) 2013 Wilderland Records
  • Total Length: 39:42
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B00B3DR70E
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 10,739 in MP3 Albums (See Top 100 in MP3 Albums)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Sid Nuncius HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWER on 17 Feb 2013
Format: Audio CD
I like this album very much overall. It takes some guts to record some of these ballads after they have achieved legendary status in versions by truly great performers, but by and large Mitchell and Hamer pull it off very well.

I confess that I was a bit dubious about two US musicians, however good, recording these ancient British songs. I used to love to hear the ballads, usually unaccompanied, in smoky folk clubs in the 70s and then loved the accompanied recorded versions by Fairport, Pentangle and others, so they are deeply ingrained in me and I feel very protective toward them. Happily, I think that nearly all of these versions are also excellent and add a fresh feel to the songs which I like very much. There is some lovely guitar work and the harmonies are beautiful. They are not in a style we might expect in these songs and the tone is often brighter and brisker than we may be used to, but that's fine by me and I really like the feel of it.

The one exception to this is Geordie. This is such a beautifully tragic ballad that the slight jauntiness of the treatment jarred rather badly with me. It's not that I want it to be austere and grim - one of my favourite versions is by Trees on their album On The Shore, which is anything but austere - but it does need an air of lament about it which is somewhat lacking here.

That aside, this is a terrific album of hugely enjoyable arrangements of wonderful traditional songs, and warmly recommended.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By HsSimon on 20 Feb 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I just received the new album Child Ballads, by Anais Mitchell and Jefferson Hamer. It's simply wonderful! I have heard all these songs by many artists and I never tire of them, and this collection is no doubt the best I've ever heard. The voices of Anais and Jefferson render these songs beautifully, with sparse instrumentation but for a very good pair of guitars.

If these song don't touch you emotionally something is wrong. The world is better for this. I will play this CD over and over, at home and in my car.

You can't do anything wrong if you buy this album!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By C. Funk on 19 Feb 2013
Format: Audio CD
I had not heard of Anais Mitchell and Jefferson Hamer before....and was instantly and totally enthralled with their treatment of this aged and exalted music. Their take is reverential, yet very personal, singing each old ballad with warmth and respect, yet feeling free enough to make it their own. With this fresh, light touch, they make these good old songs sound like they've just been penned. Their voices blend well together, and the lovely guitar work sets the perfect stage for the voices to shine. Truly, I can't stop listening to it - and already feel that this release will be my favorite of 2013.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mada about music on 11 Feb 2013
Format: Audio CD
This collection of seven Child ballads offers a series of fascinating reinterpretations of this traditional material that reminds me just how important these old songs were to what we would now call Americana.

While Jude Rogers, writing in The Guardian, dismissed these re-imaginings of the old songs as losing their impact because of the "pretty harmonies" and the "over exquisite" playing and production, I can't agree. Of course it's a matter of taste - and I should say I'm as fond of older folk and folk rock styles of delivery of songs like Tam Linn as anyone. But it really would be a great shame if this kind of criticism - the old "authentic folk" argument repackaged - put anyone off listening to this bold attempt to re-present these songs. At the very least an audience attuned to Anais Mitchell's excellent body of contemporary work will get a chance to hear these songs, which they might well not hear otherwise.

So these interpretations are light years away from the work of Anne Briggs on the one hand or Fairport Convention on the other. So what? This is a set of brave interpretations led by an original American singer who clearly respects the great storytelling that animates these songs. Enjoy!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By drumbuie on 11 Feb 2013
Format: MP3 Download
I rarely buy CDs, being lucky enough to be given many. But having seen Hamer and Mitchell live during Celtic Connections, I really have been counting the days till the UK release. Their treatment of the Child Ballads makes them sound as fresh and exciting as they must have sounded to those first listeners centuries ago, but they manage to do this without harking back to other more recent interpreters like Fairport Convention. That may not have pleased the Guardian's reviewer, but most of us surely prefer musicians to reinvent rather than imitate. Simple but classy and a real delight.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By R. Ogier on 3 April 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I bought this disc without ever having heard it or the performers before, because it seemed like a brave attempt to devote a whole album to some of the ballads catalogued by Francis James Child, albeit that only seven ballads are included. Of course, not all of the ballads have come down through the oral tradition, and this presents the singer with particular challenges. The singing is good and the instrumental accompaniment tasteful. Yet the overall impression I had was that the sound delivered is too sugary and melodically and harmonically lacking in variety, to bring out the sometimes brutally dramatic or mystical narratives of the ballads. This effect is increased by the close vocal harmonies employed, even if they are pleasant on the ear. The 'rose and briar' cover design is arty but tends to reinforce this slightly sentimentalised approach. The stories the ballads tell seem to be carried over the heads of the listener and the detailed plot overwhelmed, or at least demanding of an extra concentration capable of penetrating the comfortable vocal and instrumental sound. I do not doubt the sincerity, dedication and technical ability of the performers, but for me I do not think that the true character and essence of the ballads is best captured by this style of performance.
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