Album Review: Ruth Moody – The Garden
By Allan Wilkinson
This first solo outing for Wailin’ Jennys’ founder member Ruth Moody heralds an instantly impressive debut, an album filled with rootsy Moody originals, exemplified in the banjo-led title song, which opens this collection. Produced by David Travers-Smith, THE GARDEN features an array of notable musicians including Kevin Breit, Luke Doucet, bluegrass giants Crooked Still and fellow Jennys’ team mates Heather Masse and Nicky Mehta, each who offer some fine and accomplished support.
The songs are instantly accessible, ranging from the old time feel of Nest to the ethereal Within Without You, providing the album with one of its most tender moments. Equally at home on banjo, guitar and accordion, Ruth Moody demonstrates a clear understanding of just how to embellish each of her songs; it’s with her voice however that we are immediately entranced. Both expressive and heartfelt with no small measure of warmth, Ruth’s voice flits effortlessly between the contemporary and the nostalgic, with the breezy Travellin’ Shoes and the 1950s styled Tell Me respectively. Ruth also duets with Matt Wise (The Waking Eyes) on the co-written We Can Only Listen.
With a highly anticipated solo UK tour in January and a further Transatlantic Sessions tour in February, THE GARDEN is predicted to fly off the concessions tables like poverbial hot cakes. An exceptional debut.