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Never Again –  Shadowfields (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

Just as before, Shadowfields bring us a song that is happy to wander around in the centre of a Venn diagram at a point where pop, rock, ballads, high-drama, soothing sounds , gypsy vibes and emotive roots styles all have some sort of interplay. As with Awake, it isn’t quite one thing or another and depending on how you hold it up to the light shifts and shimmers between any number of genres and styles. I probably said this last time out as well but for all the musical trappings and instrument choices that seem to suggest an Americana sound, to me, there is just as much of The Old World’s traditions and trappings in their music, not so much a replication of older European music styles but certainly an acknowledgement of its legacy. But then the story of American music is that of a sound track created from a melting pot of migrating and evolving sonics, so to find touches of everything from timeless Mediterranean torch songs to British folk-rock 70’s revival sounds is hardly surprising.

Never again is about poise rather than power, grace rather than groove, understatement rather than over-play…that’s not to say it doesn’t have a great dynamic, rising and falling as the songs heads to its conclusion but proving that impact doesn’t come from just turning the volume up or kicking out the power chords…impact can come from deft, dexterous and delicious musical interplay. And that is what you have here.

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