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Farewell Sorrow

Alasdair Roberts Audio CD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
Price: 13.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Alasdair Roberts is a Scottish/German folk artist. Based in Glasgow, Scotland, he has worked with Drag City Records since 1997, releasing three CD/LP’s of music with his former band Appendix Out as well as five CD/LP’s of music under his own name. His work consists of the interpretation of traditional songs and ballads from Scotland and beyond, as well as the composition of new ... Read more in Amazon's Alasdair Roberts Store

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Product details

  • Audio CD (1 Jan 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Rough Trade Records
  • ASIN: B00008O6E0
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 172,524 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Farewell Sorrow
2. Join Our Lusty Chorus
3. Carousing
4. I Fell In Love
5. I Went Hunting
6. Down Where The Willow Wands Weep
7. When A Man's In Love He Feels No Cold
8. "Com, My Darling Polly"
9. The Whole House Is Singing
10. I Walked Abroad In An Evil Hour
11. I Am A Young Man
12. Slowly Growing Old

Customer Reviews

4 star
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4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The whole house is singing... 24 Feb 2004
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
For those who have been following the career of Alisdair Roberts since Appendix Out, the critical success of Farewell Sorrow comes as no surprise, but for me at least, the album itself was completely unexpected.
Unlike Appendix Out, which mixed pop elements with more traditional folk, on his own (although much of the band seem to have come along too) Roberts concentrates more on his folk influences, presenting a set inspired by the British folk tradition, which he earlier celebrated in his acoustic covers album The Crook Of My Arm. The results are extraordinary, the sort of tracks which raise goosebumps with a single chord, let alone that voice of his.
The first five tracks are almost flawless, Farwell Sorrow and Join Our Lusty Chorus kicking things off gently and then the glorious, lively Carousing doing exactly what it says on the tin. Best of the lot is the (slightly worrying) I Fell In Love, which takes the Grey's Anatomy approach to romance, while the haunting I Went Hunting will stay with you for days.
Generally, I'm not really a fan of folk music, but Farewell Sorrow defies any genre labels that critics might throw at it, if you don't like folk music, you'll still like this. Trust me when I say that Mr Roberts is going to be here for a while.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars odd mix of fragility and muscularity 6 July 2009
Format:Audio CD
This album might seem for the sum just a footnote in Alasdair Roberts' career, but i think and hope it is destined to become very much a modern classic.

It has this wonderful kitchen sink feel about it, a very homely and intimate vibe, and production-wise, scarcely puts a foot wrong. But it is the songs by which the album stands or falls, and here we have a collection that is pitched just right, right from the quiet but mesmeric opener "Farewell Sorrow".

With a title like "The whole house is singing" you know you could be in for something special, and this is the stand-out track of the album, especially in the coda. Full marks for not ruining this with massed choirs or synths. The final track "Slowly growing old" with its question and answer chorus could come straight from the Incredible String Band (the only thing it misses is the twang of a sitar!) and this provides an interesting point of reference (and comfort) for listeners new to Alasdair Roberts.

Alasdair's voice is very honest and true, plaintive and Celtic with neery a hint of rock-n-roll roughness, and though this album could have been a terrible pastiche of traditional folk tunes, it absolutely isn't. Now if this had been recorded in the early 70s we'd be by now lauding a forgotten hero. Brilliant. Sweet. True. Honest. Exceptional.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstandingly beautiful 2 Mar 2006
By Alexander G. Marshall VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Ezquisitely recorded and played folk album, with dazzlingly literate, wholly original and intelligent lyrics. The level of skill on display throughout is phenomenal-this man is truly a phenomenon, he's coming from a place very few modern musicians have ever properly explored, namely the legacy of BRITISH music. Try the weird (and often capo-ed) alternative tunings on your own guitar and see where you get! Bold, inventive and charming.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 400 years old yet modern 8 May 2006
Format:Audio CD
I am baffled by Alasdair Roberts' ability to make his own songs sound at once traditional and completely fresh. Spooky, melancholy, at times sinister and completely compelling. And as for the elusive 'Polly' (who features in several songs) - sounds like he's well rid of her...
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5 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Acquired Taste? 21 April 2004
By A. Macfarlane VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
I bought this on the back of a very favourable review from a reviewer who's tastes I find I usually share. But this was way of the mark. Roberts's choice of song feels contrived, coming as they do from an English folk tradition, though being contemporary approximations. I like folk music generally, and am not averse to listening to reworkings of old traditional tunes. But it just feels off when a musician in the 21st century is writing lyrics about hunting ducks with his bow and arrow; though this may be the first time since Dexy's Midnight Runners that the lyric "toor-a-ly-ay" was considered acceptable in a modern song. Perhaps I'm missing something - his voice is fine, the playing by no means bad - but this just felt a little misguided.
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