Sally OldfieldSally Oldfield
Album: Natasha
Label: Talking Elephant
Tracks: 10

This Talking Elephant disc reissues Mike's sister's ninth solo record, which dates from mid-1990. It's as dynamic a vocal extravaganza as she ever made, while the bulk of the material (all penned by Sally Natasha herself) is well up to standard. The pulse of the times is well captured on this collection of typically prog-rock compositions, and Mike himself even calls into the studio with his guitars at one point (Break Through The Rock).

Sally Natasha's tough, dramatic singing scores especially on tracks such as Break Like A Wave, while the title track, Maya and Song Of The Mountain find her succeeding in more tender nuances too. The music itself bears up reasonably well after all these years, and the assimilated tribal-disco of world influences works well on My Drumbeat Heart for instance, but to my mind the overall sound-world is for much of the time significantly dated, too rooted and locked in glittery 80s synths, excessive programming and the like (and over-engineered to boot) to be convincing in today's more stripped-back-friendly climate. If this brand of time-warp is your bag, tho', you've no call to hesitate.

David Kidman