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Ashley Hutchings All Stars Ashley Hutchings All Stars
Album: As You Like It
Label: Talking Elephant Records
Tracks: 12
Website: http://www.ashleyhutchings.com

Those fine folk at Talking Elephant are at it again, working through the back catalogue of Ashley Hutchings MBE.

Following on from last years Big Beat Combo and Twangin' 'n' a-Traddin' this release takes us back a further six years to 1988 and sees the Guv'nor touring with many of the players who recorded his finest album (in my eyes), the beautiful and moving "By Gloucester Docks I Sat Down And Wept"( both are available through T.E.R.).

Billed as Ashley Hutchings All Stars, "As You Like It" is a live recording of the band that took that passionate record on tour, it includes the likes of Polly Bolton, Clive Gregson, Dave Mattacks, John Shepherd and the late great Pete Zorn who adorns this record with his wonderful saxophone in whom's memory this album is dedicated.

This enhanced re-release contains none of the Live Gloucester Docks but rather sticks to the original album with the only addition being Dylan's "Angelina" a bootleg recording of high quality.

As you might expect throughout the music is exemplary whether it's rocking up Richard Thompson's "Cajun Woman" or the more contemporary sounding, mainly spoken "Don't Trust the Girl who's in love a horse" and "Pat Nevin Flew in on a Wing and a Prayer".

Listening now it's evident the fun and respect the band had in making this record as the musical styles jump about like an overexcited kangaroo. Country, folk rock blues and more it's a hoot.

Ian Cripps