Finn Collinson is a stunningly talented young multi-instrumentalist with seemingly endless talents and a host of successes to his name but this month saw the release of his official debut album Call to Mind; an endearing and playful jaunt that pushes on the boundaries of contemporary folk music and ushers him further into the spotlight.
Whilst Call to Mind is Collinson’s official debut album and arguably a solo affair, it is actually a rather star-studded affair with the likes of Sam Kelly & the Lost Boys’ Archie Churchill-Moss and even Katriona Gilmore of Gilmore & Roberts performing alongside him to bring to life an indelible collection of work that whisks you away with its whimsical notions and stirring ballads. Especially refreshing and atmospheric are the delicate reimagining’s of classics from throughout the ages such as Hanging Johnny, a firm fan favourite around the globe but with Collinson’s own unique and playful twist on it. Alongside these elegant reworkings Collinson has paired up with eight original tunes which are brought to life with a certain charismatic grace that is rarely seen on stage.
His music is in a word, elegant. Its sounds are delicate and intricate and no doubt that it is just that, but there is such a warming and resonant power that is held within his tender melodies that Call to Mind actually comes together as a virulent and robust collaboration of sound. Enigmatic blends wash over you as Celtic inspired tunes meld together with the jubilance of an almost nautical style and everything bubbles and spills over into a clashing genre of its own. Surrounding himself with dancing fiddle melodies and luxurious whistle and recorder, Collinson adopts a variety of instruments with which to bring his thoughts to life. An album that focusses almost entirely on the music and with the absolute minimal singing, what’s always startling is to find an album such as this where without a word, an image can be painted in your head as clear as day. From rippling waves crashing on the hull of a ship to the wind-swept grass on a craggy shoreline; Collinson paints as easily as any artist with a brush and firmly imprints these images in your mind.
Call to Mind is a versatile and stunning album that has a wealth of versatility with which to apply Collinson’s undeniable talent as he turns his hands to recorder, guitar, whistle, mandolin and bouzouki to produce a collection of masterpieces. With Call to Mind you can find a soothing calm or a slipstream of frivolity, whichever tickles your fancy.
Review by Joe Knipe