Album Review: O’Hooley And Tidow – The Fragile

Two years on from Silent June, the “chamber folk” duo Belinda O’Hooley and Heidi Tidow return with their new album ‘The Fragile’. With O’Hooleys inventive piano and the haunting vocals of both O’Hooley and Tidow, Fragile shows the duos finest harmony singing to date, particularly on the unaccompanied track – She Lived Beside The Anner and on the reworking of Massive Attack’s Teardrop.
With complex string arrangements and fine instrumental accompaniment, O’Hooley and Tidow present a highly accomplished piece of musical composition. Using poetry and the traditional stories such as Little Boy Blue, most of the album stays that way with the odd contemporary moment thrown in.
Jackie Oates also provides a vocal on the closing track Madgie In The Summerlands, which is an ode to Belinda and Heidi’s much loved cat Madgie, dreamy and suggesting all is still well.
The Fragile must be one of the most impressive pieces of work from the most unique duos on the folk/acoustic scene. Overall the arrangements and stirring voices makes this album a true masterpiece.

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