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T|HE OYSTERBAND "Deep Dark Ocean" COOK CD 128

I've heard some rubbish talked about this cd on various local radio stations:-

"The best Oysterband since ..."
"The one to break into the charts"
"The best songs ever written by Jones / Prosser etc"
"The only Oysters cd I've liked since ..."

For goodness sake there is just one thing to say about Deep Dark Ocean. It's an Oysterband album. That's it. Nothing more - nothing less. Just 43 minutes of excellence - or 86 minutes if you press replay. This reviewer happens to think they've done nothing wrong since their ceilidh band days. OK. so it's not so angry as some. It's more melodic then some but it's still an Oysterband album. The addition of Alan Scott (not permanent) has added a "string section". Put it in your machine, play it loud and listen to the words - real class. For me "Only When You Call" shows a maturity of writing. Whilst "Sail On By" for some reason reminds me of Steeleye Span, why I don't know.

People have tried to read things in as to why there's no trad track - it's simple their own stuff is good enough, Jone's voice has never sounded better. There's no bouncy little tunes - there are surely best left for the live set - listen to Chopper's wonderful intro to Native Son - chills down the spine or what?

But of course I'm talking to the converted, aren't I? I can't imagine there's any readers out there who are not Oyster fans!!!!

One of the best albums of the year.

Dave Beeby

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This album was reviewed in Issue 25 of The Living Tradition magazine.