Exposé Online banner

Sally French — The Other Side
(SI Music Simply Thirtynine, 1994, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1995-03-01

The Other Side Cover artFans of Annie Haslam listen up. If you're into powerful female voices backed with rich symphonics, then Sally French delivers the goods. The comparison with Renaissance has a solid base, but occasional similarities with Kate Bush, Heidi Kemp (Solstice), and some of the early British singers like Sandy Denny, Clodagh Simonds (Mellow Candle) and others may come to mind also. Her voice is expressive and pure, but unlike Haslam, a bit more soft and understated. All of the album's eight tracks were penned by French, who is credited only for vocals. The music resides along the folk-pop axis, but for the most part is cloaked in heavy symphonics, utilizing string synths and Mellotrons to build a larger-than-life wall of sound. Keyboards, orchestral harp and 'tron are provided by Dave Etheridge, while other musicians handle guitar and drums. Compositionally, the music rarely goes beyond being an atmospheric backdrop for voice with some melodic embellishments — there are few solos or other instrumental excursions that would truly bring it out of simpler realms and into the leagues of a Renaissance or Solstice. Still, for what it is, it holds its own well. The only letdown here is her attempt at a rocker (and perhaps a hit), "My Time Has Come" with its cheesy lyrics is in total contrast the high standard set by the rest of the material. That ignored, this is a beautiful album that I'm sure many would enjoy.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 6, 1994 releases

Related artist(s): Sally French

Latest news

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart $amp; Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more

2017-09-06
Holger Czukay RIP – Holger Czukay, a musical experimentalist without boundaries who has been involved with expanding the sound palette of rock music since the late 60s, has died at the age of 79. After studying with Karlheinz Stockhausen in the early 60s, he became fascinated with the possibilities of rock music, and was a co-founder of the pioneering group Can. He leaves behind an impressive body of work both as musician and producer. » Read more

2017-08-22
John Abercrombie RIP – Another of the greats of jazz guitar has left us. John Abercrombie plied his way through a beautiful series of albums on the ECM label as well as bringing his talent to bear on albums by many of jazz's greatest artists. From his early work in the group Dreams to Gateway and outstanding work with Billy Cobham, Jack DeJohnette, Kenny Wheeler, and many more to his own trios and quartets, he brought a unique instrumental voice to the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Richard Thompson & Danny Thompson - Industry – Most people who are aware of Richard Thompson would probably not consider his music 'progressive,' and they would probably be right on most occasions. To be sure, he was a key player on...  (1998) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues