Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 9/10
There are colonies of bees that swarm all over the land in search of such richness, the flower that supplies the seeds for the recipe of the finest honey and the way it adds a slight golden hue to the endeavour of the day’s work; nobody has told them they that to be seen as super productive if front of their demanding queen, all they have to do is listen to the sound of Greg Russell’s debut solo album, Inclined To Be Red, and the elixir of life will be theirs for the taking.
There has been no stopping Greg Russell over the last few years, a veritable feast of music that has been so pleasurable it could recline on a French bed, have slippers made of velvet upon its feet and still have room in its life for the enticement of a ring on the outside of well stitched glove; yet Inclined To Be Red goes beyond such trappings of society and its gestures. Instead it nestles itself firmly in the Folk landscape, the far and away more beautiful aspects of life that require only belief, sharp attention and compassionate story telling; something that the velvet glove with the diamond ring attached would never understand.
Whilst still performing live and making unbelievably exceptional music with his harmonious partner Ciaran Algar, this debut solo album is one that brings a sense of different perspective to the table, the beautiful picture does not change, it just has somebody look at from another angle and point out the obviously sincere that from wherever you stand, Inclined To Be Red is as near to a masterpiece as you can hope for.
In songs such as Road To Dorchester, Travelling Onwards, Crooked Jack, Joe Bowers and Tomorrow You’re Gone, Greg Russell and his companions, Archie Churchill-Moss and Tim Yates bestow the listener on the voyage, the same one in which the bees follow the scent of honey, a sense of utter faith in the magnificence of Folk, of gathering amber from traditional sources and making them so powerful, so cool to listen to, that they beat the heart just that little bit quicker.
A glorious debut, Inclined To Be Red is no slouch, it takes no arm twisting or persuading to listen to, it just sounds tremendous.
Greg Russell’s Inclined To Be Red is released on 21st July 2017.
Ian D. Hall