The Loft Singers - The Bedmaking

2012 studio album

The Bedmaking - The Loft Singers

the bright young folk review

The Loft Singers are a community choir, otherwise known as the Andover Museum Loft Singers, so named for the location of their practice sessions at the Andover Museum of the Iron Age, Hampshire. Conducted by Paul Sartin, The Bedmaking is their first album release and is a well chosen collection of 15 English folk songs, all sung unaccompanied by the choir.

This is firmly traditional fare, with powerful group singing throughout. The material is primarily made up of folk standards with a few lesser known songs also included, all arranged by Paul Sartin to a high standard. The tone of the material is very varied, with a generous helping of optimistic and joyful themes. The singers are clearly having a great deal of fun and this is shared with the listener.

The album opens with Acre of Land which is a great demonstration of powerful group singing and this is continued strongly in the Loft Singers’ interpretation of The “New” Deserter.

Byker Hill is melodic and offers a real contrast to the energetic Bellowhead version released in the same year. Less well known will be The Hog’s Eye Man with its derogatory story of bargemen from the point of view of sailors, and the title track The Bedmaking. Simplicity is the key throughout, without instrumentals or overly complex arrangements, allowing the superb harmonies to shine through.

This is an excellent collection of traditional English songs which should have a wide appeal.

Mike Hough

2012 release
Wildgoose studios

Conducted by Paul Sartin

1. An Acre of Land
2. The Wycombe Caning Girl
3. The Bedmaking
4. Byker Hill
5. Come Write Me Down
6. All in a Row
7. Pleasant Month of May
8. The American Stranger
9. The Hog’s Eye Man
10. The "New" Deserter
11. Queen of the May
12. The Country Carrier
13. The Wild Rover
14. Johnny Todd
15. Homeward Bound

The Loft Singers discography