Christy Scott – Amaranthine

EP Review | Self Release | Review by Marc Higgins | Stars: 3/5

Christy Scott is a young singer songwriter from the Scottish coastal town of Buckie. Now studying music at the Royal Conservatoire in Glasgow, this self released EP is her first CD and is a long awaited release. “Hearts Collide” the EP opener is a strong start, with a gentle Folk Americana feel. Keening guitars and a rich melancholic vocal grab your attention from the go. Christy’s voice with its beautiful burr is sympathetically cradled by warm acoustic instrumentation and some beautifully understated playing. She has surrounded herself with fine musicians, Alice Allen on Cello, Aidan Moodle from Gnoss, also studying at the Conservatoire is on acoustic guitar, Madeleine Stewart a member of Folk Fusion band Eriska plays fiddle, Charlie Stewart, Double Bass is BBC Scotland’s 2017 Young Traditional Musician of the year and a member of Dosca, Neil Paton on drums plays with the Brodie Jarvie Septet, Davie Dunsmuir on electric guitar plays with the Scott Wood Band. That so many of the players are current or recently past Scottish Conservatoire students is an indication of the musicality here and the sense of the beginning of a future musical pedigree. The set is titled “Amaranthine” ‘unfading and everlasting’ indeed, a strong opening statement from a musician demonstrating commitment, chops and that they are here for the duration. “Potion”, track two, has a lighter almost acoustic pop touch. The tune skips along on the balls of its feet skittish and infectious. Until the fiddle break it could be The Weepies or 80’s indie guitar pop band The Sundays. Christy’s voice is pure and clear and holds your attention totally. The playfully titled “Another Song About Another” features another wonderfully dark country slide guitar riff and a bedrock of a rolling drums from Nel Paton. The vocal duet at the end of the track is just blissful. “Flawes to Uncover” is another collision of heavenly vocals, county strings, jazz percussion and skittish guitar. “Hope Street” the final track is probably the most contemporary sounding track on the EP, the close miked guitar with its valve amp sound and the sounds of fingers on strings sounds very 4AD or Belladonna. Nothing on this set stays still and the middle section is a percussive clattering drum part, strings and a chilling vocal duet before a big guitar work out and a final vocal that leaves you hanging. Stunning. As a listener this five track EP feels like one of those self-service buffets, you load your plate and just keep discovering other things to pile on your dish. All you can eat indeed. An assured opener from a strong singer and a set of names that will im sure keep cropping up on future fine recordings.