Andrea’s new release Live at New Hall is a live recording, which is a change for her and she knew what that means, “with a live recording there is no covering up mistakes – you need to be incredibly organised yet able to roll with the punches.”
But a live recording is more than the risks of mistakes, it is the potential to capture an amazing sound produced by that performance, which is the result of the venue, the musicians, the mood and is a one-off, and will never be heard again.
The recording was made in October last year. “We held two shows – a matinee show and an evening show on the same day and both shows sold out which was a fantastic, and encouraging, result.” So what do we get?
Live at New Hall is a double CD with excellently recorded tracks. As well as a challenge to the musicians, it’s a challenge to the sound engineer who has to mix for the venue, and also for the recording. Not always easy, but right on the money for this performance.
At the performances, Andrea was joined by David Robertson (husband/drummer), Heath Robertson (lead guitar) and Tim Waters (double bass) forming a core four-piece band, along with musicians Matiss Schubert (mandolin/fiddle), Jack Meredith (harmonica) and Carolyn Davis (piano) who feature on select songs. Her daughter also joined Andrea for a song she’d written especially for them to be sung together.
Andrea plays alt-country, moving away from the over polished Nashville sound and accepting the influences of other styles. Her music draws on country, folk and blues and the songs are personal and heartfelt. She has released “I’d Like to Think” as a sampler on the usual digital sites, but I prefer “Slow Things Down.” I’m just contrary.
Andrea can have the last words, “I wanted a challenge and boy, did I get one!”
Reviewed by John “Dr John” Lamp