Wendy Weatherby

A Breath on the Cold Glass

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Going back well over a century, the cello was in common use in Scotland along with the fiddle. That's died out, at least for the most part, but Wendy Weatherby certainly keeps the spirit of it vibrantly alive on this disc, which mixes traditional and contemporary compositions, as well as her delightful singing. She delves into the Nathaniel Gow tune book for "Coilsfield House," a longtime Scots favorite, but she's equally adept on her own material, such as the lively "Ballachulish Tango," where she brings electric cello into play. On "The Learig" by Robert Burns, her singing is captivating, delving right to the heart of the words. The cello has a wonderful autumnal darkness, which Weatherby uses well on "Happed in Mist" (which is also her best vocal performance on the disc). Closing with the title cut, this is a distinguished album. It might not have the outgoing gaiety often associated with traditional Scottish music, the flaring fiddles and dances, but that's fine. This is an artist's expression, and music is wide enough to embrace all, especially when it's this good.

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