Huw M – Gathering Dusk
On debut Os Mewn Swn, Huw M sung entirely in Welsh, letting the music do the talking for those of us not fluent in the language (we can assume the majority of those reading aren’t). It might have been nice to maintain this approach on bilingual follow-up Gathering Dusk: as before, when he phlegmatically coos in Cymraeg, all melts together into gooey, sunny loveliness; when he switches to English, asinine couplets occassionally stick in the throat (Hide Behind You, hang thy head).
Elsewhere, folk-pop melodies skirt dangerously close to Mraz-ish empty whimsy, but successfully retain their compsure: Chwyldro Tawel, Ystafellowedd Gwag and For While I Wait For You To Sleep warrant particular praise, the former evocatively melancholic, the second proffering fluttering, gossamer guitar work, and the closing lullaby boosted by Bethan Reynolds’ gentle harmonies. A step sideways rather than forward perhaps, but a nicely judged one. [Chris Buckle]