This Norwich-based foursome have just
celebrated ten years playing some of the most truly eclectic music on the
British folk scene. And this album demonstrates their sheer class, and their
The array of instruments is enough to make
one gulp: and the fact each musician so obviously knows his way around them,
makes one gulp even more. Methinks I should not say "he": vocalist Chris Schwabe
also handles whistles, flute, melodeon and percussion, on top of her duties at
the microphone. Very decent vocal delivery to boot: a voice with a texture that
has something of a Sassenach version of Isla St.Clair's in it.
The tracks that really stood out were our
traditional "The snows they melt the soonest" and an utterly manic yet brilliant
traditional Yiddish thing called "Oi Tate". What a tremendous sense of ATTACK
they bring to it.
Indeed the whole CD is characterised by this
band constantly using their thinking caps, and coming up with the right mood for
each particular number. Whether sensitivity or brio is called for, they
repeatedly deliver throughout this album.
Maartin Allcock Mooncoin - Spinndrift
From the opening notes of Bucimis to the
final notes of Oi Tate, this is a superbly recorded and intensely musical album
which gets played a lot in our house. Singer Chris Schwabe has one of those
too-rare voices which actually can take you to the centre of the song with a
very full and tuneful voice. The whistles and flute sound as good as any from
the Emerald Isle and the violins have not only fluid articulation and spotless
intonation but also full tone without sounding too classical. Skryp’s guitarwork
is delightful and the imaginative arrangements and tasteful percussion have all
the authority of Planxty or The Bothy Band without sounding too Irish. Indeed,
thanks to the aforementioned Bucimis and Le Vin d’Amour, a song in French, there
is a definite European flavour to the album which makes a refreshing change and
the whole thing is as new-sounding and as refreshing as the likes of Fernhill.
Maartin Allcock May 2004
Eastern Daily Press Review…
Another excellent collection from the
hardworking Norwich folk band sure to please their many fans in East Anglia and beyond. Celtic tunes predominate
with, for the first time, a healthy and welcome input of East European tunes. The Hamburger set is a real toe-tapper.
The musicianship is first-class throughout and Chris Schwabe is once again in fine vocal form on a handful of
English and Irish ballads with She's Like The Swallow and North Country Maid especially pleasing. The only
non-traditional track is the French song Le Vin D'Amour which fits well with the band's obvious aim of widening
their musical repertoire. Available from Mooncoin at gigs or www.Mooncoin.org.uk.
English, Scottish, Irish,
French, Swedish, Bulgarian, Armenian, Yugoslavian and Jewish.
The choices of second language learning at your local night classes?
No, we're talking about the sweeping range of Spinndrift the new album from Norwich based band
Mooncoin who are celebrating ten years at producing some of the classiest European folk music in the UK right now.
Almost as wide-ranging as the material they play is the dazzling array of instrumentation that comes into play on
the album and indeed during their live show. Twin fiddles, whistles, flute, melodeon, cittern, bass, guitar and
assorted percussion are the norm, not to mention vocals. There is no real point in talking about individuals as all
four members of Mooncoin are all hugely accomplished musicians and as such it is the whole band that give virtuoso
performances and not just down to one or two of them.
Spinndrift is an album stuffed full of different textures and shades - gentle, drifting songs
painting pictures of other times are balanced with driving tunes pushed along with great use of percussion and
underpinned with deft, choppy cittern and guitar work.
The production throughout the whole album is superb and it is obvious from the word go that this is a
band that are taking their music very seriously indeed. And so should you.
Buy it now.
Ian Harvey September 2003
Mardles Magazine October 2003 Review… Mooncoin, Spinndrift
I saw this band last year for the first
time at Lincoln Folk Festival, where they opened for Vikki Clayton and
played a very good set. I particularly remember being
impressed by the whistle playing. This CD is a lovely mix of mostly
traditional tunes from a variety of countries and in a variety of styles
(sadly the sleeve gives no information on the sources of the tunes) and half
a dozen very well sung and well arranged songs (with lyrics). Well worth a
Everett September 2003
fRoots Magazine December
2003 No. 246 thumbs up
review… Mooncoin Spinndrift (own label no cat. no.)
An Anglo-German outfit based in
East Anglia playing a mix of Irish, Scots, English and European material with technical dexterity.
Their third album takes in various idioms (songs, dances)
covering traditional bases to contemporary compositions. The result is uniformly pleasant and characteristically
Review from 'Folker!'
1/04 (equivalent to German fROOTs
magazine) Mooncoin Spinndrift
reizvoll, eine englische Gruppe ein Repertoire quer durch Europa spielen zu hören, nordische und osteuropäische
Stücke neben irischen und englischen. Die Gruppe ist genau so instrumentiert, wie man sich das von den Inselmusikern
vorstellt, mit Fiddles und Whistle, Gitarre und Perkussion. Und die Stimme der Sängerin entführt uns geradezu auf
die Inseln, Reels und Jigs gehen in Beine und Ohr. Selbst die Schrift auf dem Booklet sieht keltisch aus. Um so
reizvoller erscheinen dann die - durchaus englischen - Versionen von "Lesnoto", "Bucimis" oder "Polska fran Boda", die
dabei richtig tanzbar gehalten sind.
Übrigens keine ganz englische Gruppe: Violonist und
Perkussionist Uli Schwabe spielte einst in Leipzig, bevor er in den 80er nach England auswanderte. Seitdem kommt er
als Musiker und Geigenbauer wenigstens einmal im Jahr nach Rudolstadt. Wer es nicht bis zum nächsten Jahr erwarten
kann, die beschwingt-verträumte "spinndrift"
zu kaufen, sollte nach England schreiben oder auf die homepage schauen.