The Tales That They Tell
(independent, 2013)

The phrase "new wave" follows Folklaw around. Folkroots magazine said about they were like "Show of Hands with a new wave ethic," while FolkWorld described them as an "acoustic new wave army." I don't know if they want to be pigeonholed in a category like that, but I know their music is aggressive, solid and exciting Celtic folk-rock, with more than a spark of rebellion to it.

They sing about current issues, using traditional folk instruments, playing what would have called protest music during the American '60s. "Leaves of Gold" is about British corporations trying to strip forests, despite the land's historical importance, while "The Tales That They Tell" argues against the shallowness and superficiality of contemporary society. "Seeds of Freedom" is about one man's determination to live life his own way by taking to the road in an attempt to find freedom:

Give me my old clothes
and the sunshine on my back
and the crunch of the stones
underfoot down a rough beat track....

And I will go,
travel these open roads
till I've gone so far I've nowhere left to go....

Occasionally, they toss in a love song, like "Gypsy Rain," but mostly they are interested in social issues. They're also interested in fine music, though, and good songwriting, so they never make the mistake of preaching. They write thorough characters, mostly, with solid imagery and strong metaphors.

Folklaw offers strong musicianship and passionately felt lyrics. That's a very good mixture.

[ visit the artist's website ]

music review by
Michael Scott Cain

13 July 2013

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