I cannot believe that only a couple of years ago, I had no idea that this stunning musician existed. This is the third album that I have bought now by this extraordinary multi-instrumentalist and vocalist, and each one is a new musical experience.
The first - "Righteousness and Humidity" was a revelation - an exceptional collection of american traditional and old-time tunes, arranged in Simpson's unique way, and featuring superb acoustic and steel guitar work, not to mention tremendous banjo. The next - "Cool and Unusual" was a very different animal - featuring a mixture of mainly British traditional music, with many ballads, played with obvious skill and passion, and with an African influence.
So where does this album fit, and does it measure up to the immensely high standards set by the other two? For a start, it features more of Simpson's unique arrangements, which seem both authentic and fresh, and once again his style and feel are unmistakable. This time, the focus is on English traditional music, and his love of these tunes is evident. Every piece is performed with great respect and authority, and the story seems the most important element. This is the straightforward folk music, played by a master of the genre, and it will appeal to traditionalists more than either of the other two albums I have heard. It is also fair to say that unless you are already a fan of this style of music, you would be better off with "Cool and Unusual". Or if you prefer American traditional music, why not try "Righteousness and Humidity".
Whatever sounds best to you, please buy at least one album by this amazing performer. You will hear some moving and powerful pieces by one of the finest fingerstyle guitarists in the world (in any style). Outstanding and highly recommended!