Album: Kate Rusby, While Mortals Sleep (Pure)


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The Independent Culture

While Mortals Sleep is Kate Rusby's second album centred around the tradition of South Yorkshire carols, and, although pleasant enough, it lacks the variety and sparkle of some other albums covered here.

It opens at its peak, with "Cranbrook" being a version of "While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks" done to the tune of "On Ilkley Moor Baht 'At". It's a perfect fit, and it also suits the naive, little-girl tone of Rusby's voice well, with the gentle brass arrangement added to the later stages providing the icing on the cake.

"Joy to the World" and the "Rocking Carol" are likewise burnished with subtle brass, while "Kris Kringle" profits from a pleasing accordion arrangement and cornet solo; but after a while the similarities between tracks, particularly that distinctive vocal approach, take the shine off the album.

DOWNLOAD THIS: Cranbrook; Joy to the World; Kris Kringle