Neil Foster's recent album 'Early Light' gently nudges me back to the days when I first put on my Simon and Garfunkel Greatest Hits vinyl LP on my rickety portable record player. The small wooden box was covered in a cream coloured plastic material and contained a dodgy needle that even a inner city addict would stay clear of.
Luckily the only scrapes I can hear on this recording with today's digital technology are Neil's fingers shifting with consulate ease about the fretboard. Not a complaint but I think the finger scrapes adds to it's almost live feel.
This CD needs a few listens but with the gradual shift into the summer, this recording makes a perfect accompaniment to lazy days with each track pouring me a refreshing drink.
His friend and producer Jon Hall, produced,recorded and mixed everything at his studio in Islington and expertly helped Neil to keep the recording true to it's intention. The ar-rangements are simple with just a raw acoustic guitar showing a confidence in his song-writing abilities with the title track 'Message to a Friend' and 'Raincoming' among my fa-vourites. Neil's harmonies are flawless and perhaps with a bigger production and with experience in working with orchestras including his percussion on 'Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers', we might one day get to hear the full potential of his arrangements.
This is an enjoyable first album and a perfect springboard for future recordings. If you like your music and songs with feeling and character without the frills then this is worth re-peated listening.
David Dee Moore
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