Review Archive

‘Borderlands’ from Haddo - bringing together music from both sides of the border

(May 21, 2014)

The combination of talents is not always a recipe for success. Empathy has to go hand in hand with skill. One listen to ‘Borderlands’ from Haddo (aka Will and Nicky Pound) will assure any listener that both Haddo-borderlandscoexist here. ‘Borderlands’ reveals a deep seated understanding between two musicians, it also reflects the bringing together of music from both sides of the border, blending echoes of Scotland and England augmented by innovation and invention.

 A jaunty dance tune ‘Ampleforth’ sets the scene and followed by the ‘Two Williams’ set of jigs, evidences the geniality that pervades this album. From vigorous and intricate Longsword dance traditions and sprightly Morris tunes to hearing Nicky’s sparkling vocals on the murder ballad ‘Two Sisters’ and their ‘swing’ version of ‘Old Tom of Oxford’ - this is listening to two musicians that have dropped round for tea and treated the assembled company to a set of songs and tunes – it sounds intimate and informal. That level of affable appeal continues through a tune written for a friend’s birthday with ‘Earl of Newman’, Duncan Chisholm’s delightful ‘Farley Bridge’ and Nicky’s softly melancholic take on the Jacobite song ‘Will Ye No Come Back Again’.

Each time ‘Borderlands’ finished, I reached for ‘replay’, and I’ve not finished yet. This is an album that blends fiddle and viola with melodeon, demonstrates the synergy between Will and Nicky and ultimately delivers a welcome you’ll want to share. Borderlands releases on Lulubug Records 19 May 2014.

Reviewer: Dan Holland

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