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- CHEM155CD / Supergroup feat. members of Delgados, Idlewild, Twilight Sad, Frightened rabbit, Sparrow & The Works
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- First Edition by The Fruit Tree Foundation
9/10 Mike Staff review, 23 June 2011
In case you're not already aware, The Fruit Tree Foundation is a Scottish band/collective put together to raise awareness and funds for The Mental Health Foundation, so if you buy this you won't just be picking up a great new record, you'll be doing your bit towards something really positive. Somewhat appropriately given the cause, the line-up on here is totally mental. We've got Alasdair Roberts, Jenny Reeve, James Yorkston, members of Frightened Rabbit, The Twilight Sad, Idlewild, The Delgados...pretty much a who's who of the current Scottish indie/folk scene. Oh, and the lovely artwork was done by some bloke called Aidan Moffat, whoever he is. Musically you'll be happy to hear that they've written an entire album of brand new material, all of which sounds really rich and sophisticated. It's got everything from ballads to some pretty uplifting rockouts like 'I Forgot the Fall', which closes with a blazing guitar solo over a cinematic string section, before the record changes tack completely as it drops into the beautifully pastoral Alasdair Roberts/James Yorkston number 'Beware Beware'. Actually, this constant direction-changing is kind of as much of a weakness as a strength, I think, but it's in the nature of such an ambitious collaboration. Basically each song is written as a collaboration between a couple of the artists involved, and then they've got their band of living legends to flesh them out into the finished product. At 14 tracks it's a pretty long and varied album, and I like it much more than any of The Reindeer Section's previous attempts at this whole Scottish indie supergroup thing. It's great to hear a charity record where the music is as good as the cause (see also that recent Kanshin comp for Japanese disaster relief if you're into more experimental stuff!).
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