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Customer Review

VINE VOICEon 13 September 2004
Alasdair Fraser is a well known and well respected exponent of traditional Scot's music. If you haven't heard him most people can at least guess what they will get with a Fraser release - indeed there's few finer exponents of the Scots fiddle tradition.
What makes this CD better than many other contemporaries is the playing of Natalie Haas. Its relatively unusual to hear a Cello in a traditional Scots tune - but apparently it was much more normal back in Neil Gow's day. The combination is a very good one for this kind of music, so I am amazed we don't hear more of it. Its a perfect accompaniment to Fraser's playing. The melodies pass between the cello and fiddle seamlessly. Haas sometimes plays almost percussive accompaniment, sometimes she mimics a bagpipe-like drone (without the overbearing effect that often has), sometimes she allows the melody to soar - the cello is a much more attractive sounding instrument for some Scot's fiddle tunes (which can on occasion sound a little too shrill). Fraser manages to play the dazzlingly dense maze of notes as if it were the easiest thing in the world to do. This CD sounds like two very good musicians enjoying themselves.
The music as you would expect is largely new arrangements of traditional tunes, so many will be already familiar. Fraser and Haas manage to bring a fresh sound to an old tradition and very welcome it is too. I can't recommend this CD highly enough..
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