Bruce Cockburn
Crowing Ignites
True North Records

A Guitar Masterclass That Defies Description.

There are quite a few ‘instrumental albums’ in my collection; predominantly of the Jazz persuasion, but one or two Delta Blues ones for good measure (one has 17 harmonica tracks on it!) plus a couple of ‘Experimental’ type things from Mahavishnu Orchestra among others; but nothing in the Folk idiom.
I say ‘Folk’; but that moniker doesn’t do justice to what Legendary Canadian singer-songwriter Bruce Cockburn has created here alongside a handful of friends.
The quality throughout Bruce Cockburn’s 35th album CROWING IGNITES (and second one of instrumentals!!) is of such a high standard I don’t want to just call them ‘tracks’ …… how about opuses?
The first of these ‘opuses’ is Bardo Rush and I was left spellbound the first time I played it; and again tonight Cockburn’s dazzling fretwork is almost peerless in the musical world I inhabit.
Okay; this was all recorded in a studio; with plenty of time for Take 2’s; but the playing on each and every track is absolutely flawless and, it has to be said exemplary too.
There are flourishes in Easter and The Groan* that will send a shiver down your spine as your lips break into a stupendous grin; such is the way Cockburn delivers a Masterclass in Acoustic Guitar playing.
Perhaps what has impressed me most here is that Bruce Cockburn manages to create music that could and should be in very different genres; but somehow manages to make the intriguing Jazz opuses Angels in the Half Light and The Mt. Lefroy Waltz sit comfortably alongside the delightful Ragtime ditty Sweetness & Light; a raw Blues tune like Blind Willie and the transcendental (?) Seven Daggers and make them all sound cohesive.
What a rare talent this man really is.
Selecting a single Favourite Track (or should that be opus?) is almost futile; but then again two tunes really do manage to stand out here.
April in Memphis is quite staggering in its very own rite; with Cockburn playing his guitar in an almost Classical fashion; and then I read that it was written on MLK Day 2019 and is dedicated to Dr. King; my heart skipped a beat.
The other is also a tad on the Classical side; but with a dramatic Celtic spine too, which combines to make Pibroch, The Wind In The Valley quite remarkable in many ways; which is why it’s probably taking the accolade.
For an album as beautiful as this, there were very few people involved in the making; all of whom; including Iona Cockburn; 7 year old daughter of Bruce who helped supply handclaps on The Groan; deserve a huge round of applause for creating such a magical and majestic body of work; that will certainly stand the test of time.

Released September 20th 2019

One thought on “Bruce Cockburn CROWING IGNITES

  1. […] 25 Scott Walker -THE ROCK HOUSE PROJECT 24 Jason James – SEEMS LIKE TEARS23 Roses and Cigarettes – ECHOES & SILENCE22 Willie Farmer – THE MAN FROM THE HILL21 Gurf Morlix – IMPOSSIBLE DREAM20 Jason Ringenberg – STAND TALL19 Little Steven & The Disciples of Soul – SUMMER OF SORCERY18 Eamon Friel – ATLANTIC LIGHT17 Ian McNabb – OUR FUTURE IN SPACE16 Paul Nelson – OVER UNDER THROUGH15 Casey Kristofferson Band – DIRTY FEET14 Various Artists – Songs & Rhymes From The Mines (an East Midlands View) 13 Judy Collins & Jonas Fjeld – WINTER STORIES12 The Delines – IMPERIAL11 John Fusco & The X Riders SELF- TITLED10 Dave Rosewood – GRAVEL & GOLD09 Jack Savoretti SINGING TO STRANGERS08 Robbie Fulks – 1607 Screamin’ John & TD Lind – LITTLE BIG MAN06 Nils Lofgren – BLUE WITH LOU05 Arlen Roth – TELE MASTERS04 Rory Gallagher – Blues (3 CD Box-set) 03 Billie Williams – HELL TO PAY02 John Kilzer – SCARS01 Bruce Cockburn – CROWING IGNITES […]


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