James Yorkston and The Athletes - Just Beyond The River

Sounding suspiciously like a folk album, Just Beyond The River does not break any new ground. The Fife village of Kingsbarns, where Yorkston was raised, is described on Domino Records' site as a "make-your-own-entertainment kind of place" and this is reflected here, with titles, lyrics and arrangements suggesting rural things and a sort of down-to-earth romanticism. This is music best heard while huddled up in front of a roaring fire, perhaps after a walk along some suitably rugged coastline. You get the idea.

On the recent The Function Room fellow Scots outsiders, Half Cousin, updated the traditional sound, but there's no such desire evident on this album. Fortunately, the songs, particularly the likes of Heron and Hotel, are good enough to compensate for the lack of frills, Yorkston's delivery is warm yet understated, and the guitar picking is captured clearly.

Overall

7

out of 10

Last updated: 19/04/2018 11:50:26

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