Karine Polwart - Traces
- Nicola Meighan
- 3 August 2012
The collaboration-friendly folk artist's latest solo effort reaffirms her striking reputation
For all of Karine Polwart’s unquestionable folk appeal (the multiple awards; the clarity of her voice; the history and humanity in her songs) it bears noting that she has stolen the limelight in three of our finest indie collaborations – The Burns Unit’s Side Show, The Fruit Tree Foundation’s First Edition and Sushil K Dade’s Secrets From The Clockhouse – and that the Unwinding Hours’ Iain Cook produced Traces, her wonderful fifth album.
Traces thrives with vital, contemporary protest songs (the jaw-dropping, Trump-baiting ‘Cover Your Eyes’), exquisite solidarity arias (‘King of Birds’, for the Occupy Movement) and euphoric landscape portraits (‘Tinsel Show’, about the Grangemouth refinery), in an album that (re)affirms Polwart as one of our most lyrically striking, and significant, artists.