By Seth Lakeman
Could a third single from Freedom Fields be intended to capture a market that's eluded the album and the previous two extracts? Well, it's going to have to manage without much passion. A goodish song (despite linguistic novelties that blur the plot a bit), good strummed playing on tenor guitar, good electric and double bass, quiet but perfect bodhran, fine male voice with female vocal highlights all give something rewarding to listen to; and the instrumental performance justifies its reappearance as this promo CD's b-side.
But doesn't the singing almost sound like story-telling reportage, rather than being emotionally involved? There's just one real spark, so right that it works every time, though you know nothing is going to light up afterwards. It comes as the verses bring round the lyric '24 days' and '24 weeks' - and with them a tightening of the heartstrings so necessary for there to be life in an idea delivered as a traditional ballad. If this song sells more albums and tickets, it's not because listeners will have been stirred by its ideology or by sympathy for its characters.