Having just played the Joan Baez seventy-fifth birthday concert CD with guest spots from Judy Collins, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Emmy-Lou Harris and Paul Simon before listening to this EP, Eileen Quigley’s Jumpers for Goalposts was given a hard opening act to follow, and, initially, it seemed to failing miserably.
Though recorded in a studio in the Midlands, the tracks on Jumpers for Goalposts have the sound of something knocked together in someone’s back bedroom and Quigley’s voice – on first listen – appears to be that of a good, but untrained, karaoke singer. But there is something ethereal and slightly haunting about her vocals and her songs – if you give them a minute – have a strangely eerie quality that tend to resonate on the brain and beg to be played again. And again.
Thus, while on first playing the title track feels like the typical lament of a Scottish expatriate, steeped in nostalgia for that elusive lost Glasgow that only exists in sentimental memoirs and folk songs, there is something about the timbre of the singer’s vocals that reverberates on a deeper level and creates an oddly atmospheric evocation of the city, as does the balladic Artificial Flowers. Quigley’s voice lends a rough edge to the mournful country-and-western harmonies on this and lifts it out of the region of Britain’s Got Talent Connie Francis tributes where it could so easily descend.
All in all, an interesting first collection of four songs from a singer with an original voice that this reviewer would certainly like to hear more of.