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Thursday, 2 August 2007

Mackintosh at Murthly

Mackintosh at Murthly by Pete Clark. This CD is as good as Pete Clark's Even Now which features the music of the Gows, and arguably more important, because Robert Mackintosh (1745-1807) is a less well-known figure than the Gows were. He was born in Tulliemet and had one of one of those crossover careers that were possible at the great time of the Scots Enlightenment, when Edinburgh was a hub of philosphy, science, the arts and culture, with Burns, David Hume and Scott among the great figures. Red Rob Mackintosh wrote gavottes, minuets and airs, drawing room music, with as much facility and skill as he wrote reels, strathspeys and jigs, though for me his Scots tunes have greater character and distinction. On this CD, both sides of his composition are well represented. The performers are highly skilled, their playing is stylish and the recording is excellent, as is the presentation of the CD. It was recorded at Murthly Castle in Perthshire. It is also, at 70 minutes, rather more generously filled than some Scots fiddle CDs are. One touching little point, the final tune, The Last Pint of Ale, in reality a reel, is played slowly and rather wistfully by Pete Clark on the viola as a tribute to the maker of his viola, Duncan MacDonald from the Isle of Eigg, who died in the year this CD was made. Mackintosh at Murthly.

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