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Tansy Davies Troubairitz

Grind Show (electric)
inside out 2
Salt Box
What I Write Now
plus remixes


This has been quite a difficult disc to address, and I have returned to it (listening on better equipment) with greatly increased pleasure.

Two totally different sides of Tansy Davies are on show. She first made her mark on us at a Royal Academy of Music showcase concert, which made me note to keep an eye/ear on how she developed.

The heart of this CD (or one of its two hearts) is the longest, an 18 mins sequence of settings of 12th C troubador songs, with quite amazing texts about the harsh realities of love and its disappointments. These need to be heard quite apart from all the rest and without distraction.

The singer sounds vulnerable, boyish and faux-naive, but enquiry finds Anna Snow to be anything but so; she is deeply moving in her way with these seven songs, accompanying herself lightly with simple percussion on a few of them.

I walk alone which ends the cycle is simple and poignant; the preceding two are quite complex, with ornamented lines which sound spontaneous rather than carefully studied.

The instrumental pieces seem to come from a different world - very much today's, influenced by rock etc and with a group of "remixes" by Gabriel Prokofiev etc. They are all invigorating, with driving rhythms and striking instrumentation.

Yes, Tansy Davies is certaily a composer to continue to watch out for. In a dire Kings Place evening in April of music "that connects the dots between modern dance music and experimental art music" (which I found myself unable to review) an unpretentious new piece of hers was the only item to make an impression...

Peter Grahame Woolf

See Paul Griffiths' sympathetic review of the disc.