British singer-songwriter Steve Ashley’s return to the recording studio bears rich fruit with what he states will be his ‘last bow’ in his September (2018)-released ‘One More Thing’ (Market Square; MSMCD205).

“Dare to question all you see…”, says Steve on the last track of his final album, and true to his word he does exactly that throughout the radical collection of songs that comprises ‘One More Thing’.

Theresa May, Donald Trump, The Windsors, George Clooney, The White Helmets, riot police, ‘terror correspondents’ and war-hungry politicians – all come under the closest scrutiny amid the stunning melodies and fine English poetry that have hallmarked Ashley’s creative output ever since his 1974 debut, ‘Stroll On’.

Far from splenetic, good humour abounds as a gentle yet firm hand steers us through his latest musical essay into the state of our nation, and how leaders seek to manage our lives.

Given to a light chuckle on occasion here, Ashley even collapses into laughter at the end of one song.

‘One More Thing’ is a showcase for fine English folk songwriting, one that sets contemporary issues within a traditional construct.

Dynamic, challenging and inspiring: this album marks the end of a highly original and distinctive solo career dating back to 1974’s much-garlanded debut ‘Stroll On’ – awarded the accolade of being ‘Contemporary Folk Album of the Year’ back in the day.

Buy Steve’s new album at this link …