Wrapping Christmas presents and listening to Across the Great Divide‘s new album, ‘Uncommon Ground’, put this reviewer in the right frame of mind to spread goodwill to all. From the opening soulful rendition of the classic ‘Raglan Road’ to the bluegrass feel of the closing ditty ‘Holly Cut the Horse Hair’, each track blends freely from one to the next. Tony Burt and Karen Jones, well known in Aotearoa/NZ folk music circles, have created an aural gift celebrating their Celtic and Americana roots, making their ‘ground’ far more common than not.

Mainly instrumental, featuring Celtic Harp, Resonator and guitar, with additional folk instruments and a couple of vocal tracks, the album is an uplifting package of beautifully and subtly produced traditional and contemporary music. If you like Mark Knopfler’s ‘Cal’ soundtrack, mixed with a little Penguin Cafe Orchestra and some Mary Black type vocals, then this is the CD for you. 

I recommend you buy the CD or stream the tracks for Christmas, and you’ll have ‘Auld Lang Syne’ thrown in for your New Year party. And, if you give the gift of music, the CD cover is a present in itself. 

Check it out here or listen below!

Delysse Glynn – I listen to music all day, that’s my job. 


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