A debut filled with excellent country-based songs. Perceptive words and sweet harmonies.
Welsh singer-songwriters Lowri Evans and Sarah Zyborska formed Tapestri in 2019 after meeting t a festival in Lorient France. With both of them established as Bilingual performers, a collaboration was potentially a good thing.
And with their debut album, following on from 3 singles over the last couple of years it has proved to be a great thing. From the start of ‘Tell Me World’ their mix of folk and country jumps out of the speakers with the country rock guitar solo sitting well with the more acoustic elements. Radio 2 should be playing this on an hourly rotation. ‘Waiting in the Background’ steps into the album’s overall theme of songs that look at the world from a woman’s perspective. This song reflects on the changing lives of women. The “1st verse comments on the 1950s housewife, the 2nd verse about the 1980s career woman, and the last verse is about us, making our way in music and life on our own terms.” It is equal to or better than anything that Nashville has produced on the subject of women’s struggles. On the 50s: “I’ve always been there just waiting in the background. Been a mother, and a lover, spent my time making you proud”, and today “Coz I’ve always been around. Though I shed my skin adapting to a world. That was never, ever, ever given to a girl.” Great words wrapped up in a bluesy, double bass driven tune.
‘Save Your Love’ is an interesting reversal of the unrequited love song. “I will be your lover. But I won’t be your wife. Don’t want to see you suffer. Don’t make me say it twice.” The pedal steel guitar that runs through the song is the perfect accompaniment for a song with a less than cheerful message. It also highlights Evans and Zyborska’s harmonies. With plenty of rather bland music being given some great harmony singing by other acts, having the same offered to us with tunes that have a bit of bite and well-written songs looking at life
It would be easy to just list out the virtues of every song here as there are no duds here. Could hope all commercial country was as good as ‘Crazy, Crazy Times’. Their post-lockdown song ‘Come Alive’ is a joyful piece about rebuilding confidence. The most overtly folk styled song is ‘Workshop’, looking at how a workshop, or shed, can be a haven or place of peace. ‘Y Fflam’, ‘Open Flame’ in English is one of two Welsh Language songs here and one of their early singles. Welsh is ideally suited to this sort of atmospheric tune, and it would be good to hear more sung in it. The other Welsh song is ‘Atgofion’ (sweet memories) which closes the album with a pop/country ballad.
As a debut album this a very strong offering, even allowing for Lowri Evans and Sarah Zyborska being established solo artists. Music that sits in the middle of the circles of folk, pop and country can often end up slightly insipid, but not here. Great songs, great singing. An essential album for the spring.
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