June Tabor's first solo record is an understated triumph full of good songs, great arrangements, and a crack group of backing musicians led by the guitar playing of Nic Jones. Much of Airs and Graces is pure British folk, and Tabor has much fun with such ancient numbers as "While the Gamekeepers Lie Sleeping" and "Young Waters." The standout track, however, is her version of Eric Bogle's brilliant anti-war ode "The Band Played Waltzing Matilda." Sung a cappella, you can almost feel the bitterness in her voice, a breathtaking, stunning moment indicative of how amazing she can be. Reissued on compact disc by Shanachie.
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AllMusic Review by John Dougan