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Folk, A Capella
No Masters
September 30, 2016

Format: Compact Disc



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CODA marks a farewell to touring from Coope Boyes & Simpson. There's no gentle goodnight, in their concluding event though. This tenth solo album from the trio delivers as sharp a collection of songs and resonant acapella harmonies as its predecessors.

The band draw songs from a kaleidoscope of sources -- with Barry, Jim and Lester all contributing new and traditional material to CODA's tracks. Yesterday and today are resolutely scrutinised, with thought-provoking or humorous results -- or both - check out Lester's "PET Song" (with not a kitten in sight). Masters of war slither into the musical cross-hairs too -- from Bush and Blair to Napoleon. But there are also heroes, with acknowledgements to the influence of songs learned from the great Nic Jones and Michael Marra -- and a heroine, in Marra's tale of a glowing Scottish afterlife for the artist Frida Kahlo, transfigured by a tango in a Dundee pub. Poets bring influence to bear - Robert Frost inspiring "Nothing Gold", Lester's consideration on what's really valuable in life; and the trio's many collaborations on words and music performances with the author Michael Morpugo is the link to Sean Rafferty's perfect evocation of an English May morning, "From Hereabout Hill" (set to the equally lyrical "Lemady" and coupled with a traditional May song); whilst involvement in The Ballads of Child Migration, as a recording and live concert, brings Boo Hewerdine's haunting "The Man That I Am" into their repertoire.

Work by land and sea has always been a source of the band's writing and singing and CODA sees this continue with "Bound by the Fishing", Lester's doubly musical journey through the sea areas of the east coast of Britain. Jim meanwhile, surveys a rural heritage in "The Bright Ploughshare", with a melody that adds a hint of western to the Yorkshire country. And as always, there are bigger themes -- Lester dissecting the results climate change and the fate of the Inuit in "Twilight Hunters" and perspectives on mass migration in "If We Were Them".

From Jim, the work of another poet, Ghayath Almadhoun, provides a foreword to searching, unanswered questions in "Children of Palestine". The album's closer is classic Coope Boyes & Simpson -- a ringing insistence on the values of common humanity, "The Planet's Children", inspired by an earlier workers' song and set to an even older hymn tune. Packed full of worthwhile texts set to ear-worm tunes, CODA is a last word with a continuing legacy.

More Info

Key Value
Catalogue number NMCD48
Barcode 5020393904827
Number of items 1
Packaging type Digipak
Imported No
Weight 68g
Dimensions (LxWxH) 140mm x 40mm x 125mm

Disc 1

Track Listing — Disc 1

Song Title Time
1. The Avenging Angel 03:19:00
2. Bound by the Fishing 04:00:00
3. From Hereabout Hill / May Song 03:17:00
4. Napoleon's Dream 04:01:00
5. Frida Kahlo's Visit to the Taybridge Bar 02:43:00
6. The Drovers' Way 03:19:00
7. If We Were Them 02:32:00
8. Flandyke Shore 02:49:00
9. The Bright Ploughshare 04:08:00
10. PET Song 03:57:00
11. Twilight Hunter 03:35:00
12. The Man That I Am 03:18:00
13. Children of Palestine 02:31:00
14. Nothing Gold 03:04:00
15. Anthem for a Planet's Children 02:25:00