What the Media have to Say...
Trad & Now Review (PDF Format)
Country Music Capital News Review (PDF Format)
Feast is the right word for this eclectic collection of music from some of the finest musicians in Australia – and probably the world. From classics to country, Irish folk to Australian classics, this album really does cover all the bases, and it does it brilliantly. My absolute favourite tracks are Marcus Holden’s ethereal ‘Moon On The Lake’ and the breathtakingly beautiful ‘Berceuse’. This is another amazing collection of music from some peerless players.
(Sue Jarvis, Country Music Capital News)
Let's not beat around the bush with this review.
Fiddler's Feast is a vehicle to showcase the amazing talents of the extraordinarily gifted fiddler and multi instrumentalist, Marcus Holden.
And it does spades.
Get a load of this – on this album, Marcus plays violin, viola, baritone violaectra, chincello, 5 string violin, mandolin, electric mandolin, tenor guitar, cittern, acoustic guitar, and a no.9 wood saw (with a violin bow).
Much of the time, thanks to the miracle of modern multi-tracking, Marcus is playing a number of these different instruments simultaneously, and/or multiple layers of those instruments.
And he does so with extraordinary versatility, virtuosity and damn good taste.
He plays fast, he plays slow, he lays down lush and seductive soundscapes, then stuns with a single, exquisite fiddle line.
With a core backing group of Rodney Ford on drums, Garry Steel on piano, Fender Rhodes and accordion, John Coker on electric bass and Stamatis Valacos on double bass (plus a range of guests on individual songs) providing a solid platform, the focus IS (primarily) on those stunning instrumental skills of Marcus on the various instruments in his arsenal.
He gets to stretch out over a wide range of musical genres.
From the opening so in Fats Domino track, 'I'm Walkin' featuring vocals from drummer Rodney Ford, through a high speed Mozart romp ('Rondo Alia Turca'), to a set of traditional tunes ('Angeline the Baker/Marian's Reel/King of the Fairies) Dave Brubeck's 'Blue Rondo Alia Turk', to an instrumental reading of the Easybeats 'Friday on my Mind', winding up with a delicious parody of 'The Devil Went Down to Georgia', retitled 'The Devil Went Down To Tamworth', this is literally a whirlwind of an album!
My own personal favourites on this album (not an easy pick, given how marvellous all the tracks are) include the Marcus Holden original (New Age-ish) tune 'Moon on the Lake', the weirdly wonderful saw playing on the traditional 'Aura Lee', and Django Reinhardt's 'Swing 48'.
Deliciously and wildly eclectic, with everything from traditional, blues, jazz swing and a touch the 'Old rock and roll, this is an album you just can't stop playing.”
(Ian Dearden, Trad&Now)
The Caravan arrived safely, I like it very much!
(Warren Fuller, 2NUR)
‘Caravan’ is a fine piece of work.
(John Nutting, Australian Country)
‘Caravan’ is a lovely, rich, diverse album – I’ll be playing lots of tracks.
(Jan Nary, Bay FM)
"You have my complete support... I love these blokes! "
(John Nutting, Australian Country)
“Lovely album, they’re sooooo versatile and switch so effortlessly and well from one style to the next. Caravan’s on rotation!”
(Jan Nary, Bay FM 100.3)
'The Devil Went Down To Tamworth'
"The Devil Went Down To Tamworth is GOLD!"
(Richard Margetson, ABC Darwin)
“Fiddlers Feast are the perfect festival band. Their collection of fiddle tunes, folk-jazz improvisations and reconstructed pop tunes is exactly what an audience is looking for on a Saturday morning. We were particularly impressed with the way Fiddlers Feast managed to utilize their three violinists in a way that was complimentary without being overpowering. The highlight of the set would have been their jazz-folk cover of “Down Under” by Men at Work, proving the song still has legs after its high rotation on the playlists of “classic hits” radio stations.”
2011 Blue Mountain Folk Festival Live Review
"This is a wonderful, eclectic, joyous, tumbling, and bouncing album. It is impossible to categorise this music, except to say this. The
Musicianship is absolutely stunning, there is a delicious underlying sense of humour, the arrangements are thoughtful and musically
Challenging. I loved this album, and I have no doubt that anyone hearing it will be equally entranced and delighted by it."
(Ian Dearden, Trad & Now, Dec 2006).
"Take a bunch of crazy fiddlers, add in some of the best musicians in the country, and you've got a recipe for - well, a musical feast. Frenzee is superbly crafted, brilliantly performed and energy-packed Album that captures everything that makes the Fiddler's Feast such a special group - and one which is sure to continue taking the world by storm over the next few years."
(Susan Jarvis, Capital News, Nov 2006)
"If you could have only one live band on your desert island, then choose Fiddler's Feast. They are rollicking fun, with plenty of fiddles, and a tight rhythm section playing with precision and power. Frenzee will put a smile on your face and leave you breathless with its high energy, feet tapping, no boundaries repertoire." (Limelight Magazine, Nov 2006)"I defy anyone to not like this CD. The hi-if speakers spark with the fun the band formerly known as Fiddler's Festival had recording it. They tear through a typically bizarre and eclectic mix of jazz, folk, gypsy, country and rock, including a madcap Holidays for Strings. This beats the socks off the Sydney band's previous releases on all levels, the diversity sounding more cohesive and the multi-violin front line, led by Marcus Holden, augmented by guests galore."
(4 Star Review, John Shand, SMH October 2006)
"Frenzee is a superbly crafted, brilliantly performed and energy-packed album that captures everything that makes the Fiddler's Feast a special group."
"Frenzee reveals Fiddler's Feast as a combo of superbly talented , inventive musicians, whose landscape spans pure Celtic - with violins gloriously dominant. Bold, and it its best, brilliant music-making."
(Bob Crimeen, Sun Herald-Sun, August '06)
"SENSATIONAL!!!! Gonna start playing the set today. Cheers for the copy!"
(David Kennedy, ABC Goldfields-Esperance)
"Fiddler's Feast keep raising the bar - Frenzee is another great release."
(Raymond Phillips, Country Harvest)
"Frenzee is brilliant!! It will be receiving a lot of airplay on Highland FM because it fits into so many categories - jazz, classical, easy listening, even folk. A track that stood out for me was 'Eine Kleine Nutmusik' - the treatment is superbly tongue in cheek and a sound for sore ears. I also love 'Down Under/Sakura/Otter's Holt', 'How High the Moon', 'Someday My Prince Will Come' and will be listening to all tracks many times. I will do all I can to spread the word!"
(Bob Cady, Highland FM)
"I am impressed with the album and have already began playing it on air. Next Wednesday Morning (2/8/06) it will feature as our album of the week."
(Trevor Johnson, Country Capers)
"Great album, quite an eclectic mixture - looking forward to giving it some welly!"
(Julie Cavanagh, The Folk Show)
More Frenzee Reviews (pdf format)