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by Lúnasa
     
 

On their sixth album ( is Gaelic for "six"), the Irish quartet Lúnasa have bolstered their lineup with instruments not normally found in traditionally oriented Irish music (such as a stately trombone choir in the hymnlike "Midnight in Avilés") but otherwise have remained true to their ethos of exploring new rhythmic paths and sonic textures while honoringSee more details below

Overview

On their sixth album ( is Gaelic for "six"), the Irish quartet Lúnasa have bolstered their lineup with instruments not normally found in traditionally oriented Irish music (such as a stately trombone choir in the hymnlike "Midnight in Avilés") but otherwise have remained true to their ethos of exploring new rhythmic paths and sonic textures while honoring the captivating melodies that seem to rise up out of the earth of their native land. This makes for nothing less than memorable, durable music. "Across the Black River" floats along breezily on a fluttery tin whistle solo in the wake of Tim Edey's opening acoustic guitar salvo, its steady, curlicue melody line evoking a somnolent country scene, until about halfway through, when the song shifts into a trotting gait and suddenly something's at stake. On "Glentrasna," Paul Meehan's delicately strummed and picked steel string acoustic guitar strikes a haunting folk melody -- airy, evocative, introspective -- subsequently picked up and developed by Edey on nylon string guitar, ahead of a tin whistle, as rich major chords on the piano anchor the arrangement. Closing on a lively note, the group engage in spirited ensemble and solo work on "The Ballivanich Reel/The Boy in the Boat/The Stone of Destiny," all angular rhythms and gleeful emotions keyed by a virtuoso song-length fiddle solo of breathtaking invention; near the song's end the instruments mesh in a familiar swooping riff heard in countless old-time country songs. These musicians' impeccable, informed instrumental choices are as stupefying as the end products are mesmerizing and beautiful.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Ronnie D. Lankford
With a number of awards under their belt, an impressive string of albums, and a reputation as energetic live performers, it's little surprise that any new release by Lúnasa will be a highly anticipated one. The band's current lineup, double bassist Trevor Hutchinson, fiddler/whistle player Sean Smyth, flutist/whistle player Kevin Crawford, and pipe player Cillian Vallely, are joined by a number of guests for a lively set of traditional and traditional-sounding instrumentals on . The predominance of flutes and fiddles on pieces like the melancholy "Absent Friends" creates a lilting soundscape, allowing the listener to float along with the gentle mood. Other pieces, like "Loophead" and the opening "The Cullybacky Hop," are custom-made for kicking up one's heels. is so listenable in part because the fresh arrangements vitally fill but never overcrowd each piece. While the clear sound of each individual instrument is quite easy to separate on a quiet piece like "Glentrasna," the clarity of the production also shows up on the jaunty "Leckan Mor." It should also be noted, for those who may be unfamiliar with the band, that the members of Lúnasa are less concerned with showy solo work than with melding together as a supporting ensemble. For old fans or anyone looking for a worthy introduction to Lúnasa, will prove a pleasing release.

Product Details

Release Date:
02/21/2006
Label:
Compass Records
UPC:
0766397442228
catalogNumber:
4422

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. The Cullybacky Hop: Mike Hobin's/Emmet's Hegehog/Dunrobin Castle
  2. Leckan Mór: Kalyana, Emer Maycock/Above in the Garret/Leckan Mór
  3. Absent Friends: Absent Friends/Ivory Lady
  4. Loophead: Bolton St./The Millstream/Loophead Lighthouse
  5. Midnight in Avilés: N'Alcordanza/Soig's Plinn/Skolvan Doubl Plinn
  6. The Dingle Berries: The Hop Slide/Padraig O'Keefe's/Nessa the ...
  7. Black River: Across the Black River/Iain MacDonald's
  8. Road to Barga: Timmy Collins'/Road to Barga
  9. Two of a Kind: Showacho/Portobello
  10. Glentrasna
  11. Boy in the Boat: The Ballivanich Reel/The Boy in the Boat/The Stone of

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Lúnasa   Primary Artist
Conor Brady   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Trevor Hutchinson   Double Bass
Peter Fitzpatrick   Piano
Kevin Crawford   Flute,Bodhran,tin whistle,Low Whistle
Sean Smyth   Fiddle,Human Whistle
Cillian Vallely   uillean pipes,Low Whistle
Paul Meehan   Guitar
Karl Ronan   Trombone
Tim Edey   Guitar

Technical Credits

Kevin Burke   Composer
Trevor Hutchinson   Arranger,Composer,Producer,Engineer
Roddy McDonald   Composer
Kevin Crawford   Arranger,Composer
Enda Walsh   Engineer
Sean Smyth   Arranger,Composer
Fred Morrison   Composer
Cillian Vallely   Arranger,Composer
Traditional   Composer
Emer Mayock   Composer
Javier Tejedor   Composer
Tim Edey   Arranger,Composer
Brendan Larrissey   Composer
Ian Kirkpatrick   Composer
Maurice Lennon   Composer

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