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GATHERING - Gathering – Legends Of Folk Rock

GATHERING - Gathering – Legends Of Folk Rock

The members of this outfit have been associated with Fairport/Steeleye/Magna Carta/The Backroom Boys/Tull and Lindisfarne among others.  Jerry Donahue and his daughter Kristina (nowadays also getting Cropredy slots with her Dad’s erstwhile band) provide the significant guitar hero and fem. vocalist credentials.  Ray Jackson revisits his Lindisfarne heyday with a clone of Lady Eleanor (although I doubt whether Alan Hull would have approved).  There are four Rick Kemp songs that rattle along quite well, apart from the mysterious inclusion of a faux blues about Hadrian’s Wall country.  Donahue Senior lets rip to superb effect on his instrumental Rocking The Dog, and Kristina gives a chillingly Dennyesque rendition of Richard Thompson’s For Shame Of Doing Wrong.  The ubiquitous Doug Morter glues it all together into something vaguely coherent, along with Tull’s Clive Bunker, and the total effect is pretty darn good – and if this is a taster of the forthcoming tour, I’ll be definitely trying to catch them somewhere.  I know that there’s an air of recycled and repackaged product, but they do sound like the seasoned professionals they mostly are, and this is a well-produced collection.  Sadly, though, there are occasions where the best bit of a song is the title (Morter’s Kings Cross Blues is more of a line dance injected with Telecaster riffs).

As to whether or not this is a serious venture or merely a collective to facilitate a tour in between the members’ other commitments I would hesitate to venture a guess, but it’s certainly an action-packed album that improves with repeated listens.

Grem Devlin

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This album was reviewed in Issue 82 of The Living Tradition magazine.