Ducie - Colston Hall 7/10
CONSIDERING this band only played their first ever gig last Tuesday there's a good turnout waiting for them in Hall 2, no doubt brought by the reputation of formidable fiddler Andy Dinan and possibly by early hearings of impressive CD debut Mancunia.
The cool atmosphere of the low-lit stage is quickly dispelled when the four musicians appear and kick into The Fox, a set of humdinging reels with kickstart percussion, rolling chorus-driven guitar and slightly distant bass.
Las Palmas, a tune from guitarist Ian Fletcher, starts as a rolling flamenco-rumba (albeit in unlikely seven-time) before a fearsomely intricate melody unfolds, guitar and fiddle impressively tight-woven.
Richard Sliwas' ringing cajon completes a deeply Spanish sound that feeds into an impressively moody Flamenco bass solo from Barass. A later set of polkas sets off as a cracking drum and bass number, Sliwas and Barass watching each other intently and Fletcher adding a defiantly punkish guitar as Dinan soars off.
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This confidence in a range of musical styles is what makes Ducie's music so appealing, refreshing the folk tradition with a new sense of worldliness.