11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
The most exciting innovative album of the year,
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This review is from: The Imagined Village (Audio CD)
This album redefines both "Englishness" and "English Folk Music" it makes English Folk as exciting as it's Celtic brethren and takes it a giant stride into the 21st Century. More than it's so fresh and topical, yet also gives you hope and uplifts your spirit.
In principle it's a "concept album" to use that now derided term. Yet taken in isolation the tracks are so diverse not only in their style but also in their personnel, we have the opening "'Ouses, 'ouses, 'ouses" which starts with spoken voice musing on the changing face of the English countryside and then progresses through standout tracks like Benjamin Zephaniah's reworking of Tam Lyn as a tale of love and illegal immigration, the stunning "Cold, Hailey, Rainy Night" and Billy Bragg's re-wording of "Hard Times Of Old England" to give an ultimately positive message of England and Englishness re-born.
It's not just great music, it's also important social commentary and it's the best album of the year. Bar none.