Following a wait of 10 years since her impressive debut album Testimony, Elle Osborne has released her second full album So Slowly Slowly Got She Up. Building on the recent EP Good Grief this album is certainly worth the wait.
Much of the material is splendidly gloomy, opening with the traditional lament Bonnie George Campbell. Fair Annie is a captivating a capella song that effectively showcases Osborne’s engaging vocals. Some listeners may find the stark brutality of The Captain’s Apprentice’a little too dark although it’s certainly a gripping story. Relief is provided by a soothing version of the Shaker hymn Lay Me Low.
The highlight of So Slowly Slowly Got She Up is Three Score and Ten, a compelling and completely authentic telling of loss in fishing communities on the East Coast. The original song is from 1889 with the current version based on the singing of the Filey Fisherman’s Choir. That legacy comes through clearly in Osborne’s version, with powerful harmony vocals and in the moving eulogy for the lost that follows.
So Slowly Slowly Got She Up marks a superb return from Elle Osborne.Mike Hough
2011 Release by Folk Police Recordings
1. Bonnie George Campbell
2. I Drew my Ship
3. Lay me Low
4. The Captain’s Apprentice
5. My Coffin Shall be Black
6. Dalesman’s Litany
7. Handsome Meadow Boy
8. Fair Annie
9. I’m Bound Away
10. Three Score and Ten