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The Stuff Of Dreams
on 20 March 2013
What a lovely idea and what a lovely voice too. Jackie Oates' last
album 'Saturnine' was one of the treasures of 2011 (do, do listen
to it if you haven't already). Her new recording 'Lullabies', as its
name implies, is a collection of songs designed to help babes on their
journeys to the land of Nod and what an absolutely magical venture
it is. Forget any comments elsewhere such as "niche"; such is Ms Oates'
mastery of her chosen theme and the delightful selection of songs that
our attention is not allowed to flag for a single moment. This is, indeed,
the stuff that the deepest richest dreams are made of.
There are fifteen numbers in the set and it's almost impossible to guide
you towards the best because each one truly is as good as every other.
The sublime song 'Waiting For The Lark', with its warm piano and string
arrangement, paints a sublime picture of the countryside in the early hours
when all is still and a farmer's working day is about to begin while his
child still sleeps; the crisp guitar and fiddle accompaniment to 'The Posy
Rhyme' frames a gloriously simple vocal performance and the curiously surreal
and unsettling story of 'Alexander Beetle/Farewell Nell' brings just a
smidgen of darkness to the predominantly tranquil and moonlit proceedings.
Ms Oates has given the listening world one of the greatest gifts of the year.
Every home, with a little one at its heart or not, should have one!