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TABACHE "Waves of Rush" KRL CDLDL1283

Every so often an album comes my way which totally derails my preconceptions, I'm pleased to say that "Waves of Rush" is one of those albums. Just as I thought I'd got Tabache neatly pigeon-holed as a jobbing fiddle and flute duo. With a competent if not startling debut behind them, they go and release a follow-up few could have predicted would have been of such a high quality.

With Aiden from Oban on fiddle, and Claire from Newcastle on flute, plus other assorted musical trinkets, Tabache have been toiling away with fellow Obanite Donald Shaw (Yes! he of Capercaillie fame) to deliver a CD with a guest muso list which reads a bit like a "Who's Who" hall of fame. Musically the album comprises of seven tunes, and three songs all sung very competently by Claire, whose voice has improved ten folk over the last year. Whilst the tunes are all played with a scintillating vibrancy rarely heard from a duo.

At this point a note should be logged detailing the fine production and arrangements which Donald has obviously brought to this project. He is clearly moving into the first division of Scottish producers, and it can only be hoped that we see him in this role for a long time to come. Five of the tunes present on this disc have been written by Aiden, which includes a lovely slow air "The Quiet Place" detailing the many times. As a boy he spent watching the views across the "Sound of Lorne" to the Isle of Mull. Indeed, his compositions sit very comfortably alongside tunes penned by classic Scottish and Irish writers such as Manus Lunny, and James Murdoch Henderson, he is surely one to watch for in the future.

Adding the guest musicians alongside a more contemporary production has suited Tabache very well. Although it's only early in the year, I'll confidently predict that "Waves of Rush" will be a favourite of many by the end.

Keith Whitham

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This album was reviewed in Issue 32 of The Living Tradition magazine.