‘The Gathering’ by Toby Hay “...a work of virtuosity”(March 16, 2017)
It's rarely that one describes an album as ‘overwhelmingly stunning’, however the delicate melodies and soul-touching tunes woven by Toby Hay’s dramatic touch makes that an easy way to sum up his debut album, ‘The Gathering’. At the same time sorrowing and melancholy, uplifting and joyous ... this piece of work holds tales of people and experiences, illustrations of places real and conjured, and creates physical presences out of imagination.
Some may wonder how an album of acoustic guitar-driven instrumentals can hold its audience ... not even a question with this music. Its travels between emotions and images are vital, they live and breathe, making it so easy to become one with its hypnotic embrace. The tunes are magical explorations in themselves ... ‘Mayfair at Rhayader 1927’, ‘A Thiefs Tale’, the delectable ‘Sketches of a Roman Fort’, ‘Black Brook’ and the fleeting spirit of ‘Starlings’ .. each one a work of virtuosity.
Musicians on ‘The Gathering’ are Toby Hay (6 and 12-string guitar, harmonium) Angela Chan (Violin, viola, cello) Rob Bromley (violin) and Peter Scot (double bass).
Review: Tim Carroll