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The Water of Leith


Artist: Blue Rose Code
Label: Navigator Records
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 27 October 2017

Blue Rose Code, aka acclaimed singer-songwriter Ross Wilson, releases The Water Of Leith, his first album for Navigator Records. A nomad both geographically and musically, Ross writes from the heart eschewing any specific genre and the twelve new songs on The Water Of Leith, addressing themes of love, loss, travel, home, accepting the past and embracing the future, are painted with colours of folk, jazz, soul and pop; an eclecticism that has become a hallmark of Blue Rose Code and has seen him compared to John Martyn, Van Morrison and Tom Waits...

The Water Of Leith is rooted in Ross Wilson's return to his Scottish homeland. It was here that he reconnected with the musicians who became an integral part of the new album’s sound: multi award-winning singer Julie Fowlis, celebrated Gaelic singer Kathleen MacInnes, BBC Folk Award Winner, Ross Ainslie, 2017’s Scottish Jazz Awards’ instrumentalist of the year Konrad Wiszniewski, leading violinist Seonaid Aitken and three of Scotland's finest jazz musicians; John Lowrie, Colin Steele and James Lindsay, to name just some of the contributors. Grammy-winning American singer-songwriter Beth Nielsen Chapman features on the opening track.

The album marks his first record in recovery following a personal history overcoming alcoholism and addiction, and you can almost hear the pain and the anguish pouring out of the tracks.

This is an LP of pure experimentation, as Wilson visits numerous genres and pretty much masters them all. It's a beautiful, heartfelt release with some intense tracks. 'To the Shore' was probably the highlight for me.

The album contains 12 songs and there isn't a dull moment here. Beautiful stuff.


Nick Smithson

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