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Album Review: Thea Gilmore and Sandy Denny – Don’t Stop Singing

3 min read

Fairport Convention vocalist and folk songwriter Sandy Denny may well have passed away some 33 years ago however with a new collaborative venture the musicians spirit and music is still alive and kicking with a spectacular release carried by her Oxfordshire singer songwriter equivalent Thea Gilmore.

That release is Don’t Stop Singing, a collaborative collection of ten tracks which is set for release on Monday 7th November.

TheaGilmoreDontStopSingingBack in 2007 a number of Denny’s manuscripts were found and with them the lyrics to a number of unscored songs. With Denny’s label wanting for her work to be given the kiss of life and to reach the public they were passed on to Gilmore who they believed to be the right artist to mold the songs into what would become this latest collaborative collection.

With Gilmore’s masterful talents at writing gorgeous melodies the pairing is a match made in heaven as Denny’s previously unscored lyrics have been put to some of the most inspiring pieces of music Gilmore has come to release over her thirteen year and thirteen album career.

Opening track Glistening Bay appropriately begins the slow and settled pace through the proceeding ten brand new tracks and does so with ease and sweet nostalgia as we are given the first dose of what the ten tracks is set to offer. The whispery vocals provided by Gilmore puts Denny’s poetic lyrics within a gorgeous setting of swaying lows and sugary vocal peaks allowing for Gilmore to show off her talents in front of the mic more than ever.

Title track Don’t Stop Singing is a complimenting number that sits well in the opening half of the collection as one of the most memorable additions within the track-listing.

Though the album is weighed heavily on the ballad side we are offered a fantastic uptempo number in the form of London which adds a slight versatility to both Gilmore’s vocals and the use of Denny’s lyrics. London is pure folk pop sweetness as we skip through four minutes of catchy verses and equally catchy chorus’ with Gilmore stamping her trademark folk vocals all over the track which allows the number to stand out as one of the highlight numbers on the record.

Guitar strumming is traded in for some piano tickering with Frozen Time pulling together a minimalist piano foundation around the singers swaying vocals while another of the records piano led numbers, the following Goodnight, is a well arranged ballad that puts to good use a beautifully arranged string section that dances alongside Denny’s emotive storytelling.

Gilmore has done an incredible job with Denny’s lyrics and I’m sure I’m not the only one who will say that she is the perfect artist to have been given the honors of putting the musically lyrical puzzle together in the absence of a folk legend like Sandy Denny. I’m sure that if Sandy Denny were still around today she would be very proud of the creative patchwork that Gilmore has cast her lyrics against with this beautifully crafted collection of folk-pop numbers.