Glass Shadows In Gloucester

Mostly Autumn are a progressive rock band from Yorkshire, founded in the mid 1990s around band leader Bryan Josh.

Bryan Josh At Gloucester Guildhall
Bryan Josh At Gloucester Guildhall

The band recorded a number of very good celtic and folk tinged progressive rock albums with a variety of line-ups based around the central pairing of Josh (lead guitar / vocals) and Heather Findlay (vocals).

I was introduced to the group via the track “Half The Mountain” (from third album “The Last Bright Light”) on a sampler CD given away with Classic Rock magazine at the start of 2001.

Instantly impressed, I set about collecting the band’s back catalogue and then subsequent releases – the quality of each release an improvement on what had gone before.

glass-shadows-52960ea8c9d21Having caught the group live back in 2002 at the Fleece & Firkin, I was able to introduce my better half to the group when they performed at the Guildhall in Gloucester whilst they toured in April 2008 to promote the new album “Glass Shadows”

The show was very good. Bryan Josh’s vocals and guitar playing reminiscent of David Gilmour from Pink Floyd, and Heather Findlay’s vocals as strong and ethereal as on record, despite being several months pregnant.

Missing that night was backing vocalist Olivia Sparnenn (who stepped up and replaced Findlay – no mean feat – when she left for a solo career in 2010) as she was then doing her A level examinations. Phew, rock and roll eh?!

Heather Findlay At Gloucester Guildhall
Heather Findlay At Gloucester Guildhall

Despite her absence the band put on a very good show – musically excellent, with quite a few numbers from the then brand new album. We did find it a bit disconcerting that members of the band kept leaving the stage whenever they didn’t have a part to play for a couple of minutes as the coming and going tended to distract from those actually performing at the time. Nonetheless, we were thoroughly entertained.

Olivia Sparnenn
Olivia Sparnenn

Hope to catch the band live again soon, now that Olivia is fronting the band, as their recorded material continues to get better all the time.

Probable setlist:

1. Fading Colours / 2. Caught In A Fold / 3. Flowers For Guns / 4. Unoriginal Sin / 5. Another Life / 6. Evergreen / 7. The Spirit Of Autumn Past (Part I) / 8. The Spirit Of Autumn Past (Part II) / 9. Distant Train / 10. Simple Ways / 11. The Second Hand / 12. Tearing At The Faerytale / 13. Above The Blue / 14. Nowhere To Hide (Close My Eyes) / 15. Broken Glass / 16. Never The Rainbow / 17. Pocket Watch / 18. Carpe Diem / 19. Heroes Never Die

1 and 17 originally from “Heart Full Of Sky” (2006) / 2, 5, 9 and 10 originally from “Passengers” (2003) / 3, 4, 11, 12 and 13 originally from “Glass Shadows” (2008) / 6, 7 and 8 originally from “The Spirit Of Autumn Past” (1999) / 14 and 19 originally from “For All We Shared…” (1998) / 15 and 18 originally from “Storms Over Still Water” (2005) / 16 originally from “The Last Bright Light” (2001)


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