‘Gossamer’ from Pauline Scanlon – a voice of presence and distinction(October 28, 2016)
Sometimes one encounters spiritually uplifting albums. That’s not to infer any overtly sacred overtones, it’s just that occasionally listening to music and voice restores the spirit. From my perspective, that’s what happens with ‘Gossamer’ from Pauline Scanlon ... you may not experience an epiphany or even some form of catharsis but I’ll wager you will find ‘Gossamer’ an uplifting experience. Irish vocalist and songwriter, Pauline owns a voice of presence and distinction, softly beguiling, at times fragile but always individual and engaging.
Tradition is beautifully represented by ‘False, False’, ‘The Old Churchyard’ and ‘I Wonder What Is Keeping My True Love This Night’ while to prove her ability to breathe individuality into a cover there’s a moving interpretation of the tender Drever/ McCusker/ Woomble song ‘The Poorest Company’. Not content to stop there, Pauline turns her talents to a riveting version of Leonard Cohen’s ‘Joan Of Arc’ and ‘Cold Missouri Waters’ from Canadian folksinger James Keelaghan, before an exceptional version of ‘The Pretty Bird Tree’ by LJ Hill.
‘Gossamer’ can be defined as light, almost transparent, sheer fabric or silken thread that shimmers, much stronger than it appears ... with that in mind then it’s an entirely appropriate title for an album with a touch that’s subtle, resilient and enthralling.
Review: Tim Carroll