Mostly Autumn – The Spirit of Autumn Past (1999)
Mostly Autumn – The Last Bright Light (2001)
This band is GREAT, and why they are not better known than The Corrs (the closest well known band in a similar style) I cannot understand.
The only disappointment is the packaging of the CDs (mentioned by one of the reviewers) which just looks cheap. A contract with a major record label should fix that!
Review courtesy John “Bo Bo” Bollenberg, January 2000
It often rains in England. In fact it rains an awful lot in England! Even in summer you should always have your umbrella with you, as if it’s kind of autumn all year round. So Mostly Autumn is a well-chosen name for a collective from the Hull region. By adding violin, bodhran, flute and djembe the band succeeds in adding a lot of folk elements to their original music so that we should be able to speak of the “symphonic Levellers” here. On For All We Shared… we get aquainted to their craftsmanship. Listen to the sublime “The Last Climb” with the strong Pink Floyd guitar solo from Bryan Josh and you can have the rest of the songs giftwrapped as a bonus. What power, what a bunch of fantastic songs and above all what a well oiled band! “Heroes Never Die” sits a bit in between the “old” Marillion and Barclay James Harvest, yet with a bit more zest. The ever-present Celtic influences are extra underlined in the uptempo, playful, instrumental “Folklore.” Interestingly, with Mostly Autumn, the vocal parts are nicely interspersed with fresh sounding instrumental songs giving the end product an extra dimension. Throughout the music you’ll also hear a big adoration for the music of Pink Floyd, especially the Floyd from the Wish You Were Here and Animals period, which you can clearly hear during “The Night Sky” (just listen to that wonderful guitar!).
Next to this debut, a new album has already been released. The Spirit Of Autumn Past contains the same ingredients and is therefore a logical follow-up to their debut, yet this time around even more time and effort has gone into the arrangements and the total group’s sound. They have used singer Heather Findlay’s vocal skills even more whilst the compositions are more compact and better thought about. That’s why a song like “Please” sounds like a cross between Prefab Sprout and Simple Minds. Extra Celtic atmosphere thanks to the guest appearance of Troy Donockley from Iona fame on Uilleann pipes.
A first class band like Mostly Autumn certainly deserves a first class sleeve to go with their product and not the kind of hastily put together design which is wrapped around their first two albums. Fans of Levellers, Clannad, Iona, Runrig and the likes do know what to order these coming weeks and certainly note the name MOSTLY AUTUMN in thick black marker on every piece of paper they come across!
More about For All We Shared & The Spirit Of Autumn Past:
Track Listing: For All We Shared: Nowhere To Hide (Close My Eyes/ Porcupine Rain / The Last Climb / Heroes Never Die / Folklore / Boundless Ocean / Shenanigans / Steal Away / Out Of The Inn / The Night Sky
The Spirit Of Autumn Past: Winter Mountain / This Great Blue Pearl / Pieces Of Love / Please / Evergreen / Styhead Tarn / Shindig / Blakey Ridge-When Waters Meet / Underneath The Ice / Through The Window / The Spirit Of Autumn Past (Part One ) / The Spirit Of Autumn Past (Part Two ) / The Gap Is Too Wide
Bryan Josh – electric guitar, vocals, e-bow, 6-string and 12-string acoustic guitar
Heather Findlay – vocals, 6-string acoustic guitar, tambourine
Iain Jennings – keyboards, vocals
Liam Davison – electric guitar, vocals, 6-string and 12-string acoustic guitar
Bob Faulds – violins
Stuart Carver – bass
Kev Gibbons – Low whistle, high whistle
Allan Scott – drums (on For All We Shared)
Rob McNeil – drums (on The Spirit Of Autumn Past)
Angela Goldthorpe – flute
Chè – djembe