Alexander McCall Smith features on new album

AUTHOR Alexander McCall Smith is one of the narrators featured on the forthcoming album from string duo Sequoia.

Isola, which is due to be released on 16 September, features the Scotland Street author, along with Hamish Henderson.

The author features on the title track, which he helped to compose.

The idea for the album came from composer Fergus Hall.

“I really enjoy independently implementing creative projects like this one, and opening up opportunities to peers within the industry,” he said.

“Though we are all individual in our compositional voices on the album, there is a commonality to the way we approach string instruments that focuses on the grittier side of the instruments with heavy influence from folk music and free improvisation.

“Sequoia were the perfect fit for this album, not only because they are highly skilled musicians, but because conservation and the natural environment are a central to their musical practice, themes that are often pertinent in our work as young artists.”

Hall added: “The title track of the record, ‘Isola’ – meaning island – examines the wildlife and landscape of the deserted St Kilda archipelago, with themes of isolation, distance, and remoteness.

“This sets the scene for the rest of the album, with much of the music being concerned with landscape and natural phenomena but also distance, separation, and the fragility of the natural world.”

Read more news and reviews on Scottish Field’s music pages.

Plus, don’t miss columnist Alexander McCall Smith’s reflections on Swedish music in the September issue of Scottish Field magazine.