Reviews / Clear Skies – Réalta

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Réalta

Belfast band Réalta’s second album ‘Clear Skies’ is a fantastic, foot-stomping triumph of an album. Made up largely of traditional songs and tunes, though with work from Darach du Brun, John Mackrel and Patrick Davey thrown into the mix, the result is a joyous, energetic and highly accomplished combination of Irish music, with influences from… Read more »

Reviews / Stories Untold – Kim Edgar

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Kim Edgar

Edinburgh songwriter and pianist Kim Edgar launches ‘Stories Untold’, her third album, as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in August 2016. ‘Stories Untold’ is an incredible collection of Edgar’s original songs, intimate offerings accompanied by Edgar’s dynamite piano playing. The album, tackling topics including child soldiers, the impact of crime and punishment and loss… Read more »

Reviews / Astar – Breabach

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Breabach

If I were Scotland, I would be very proud of Breabach (it’s all right – I know they are!). ‘Astar’ (the the Scottish Gaelic for ‘journey’ or ‘distance’) is their fifth album. As its title indicates, the album is inspired by the band’s last five years of traversing the globe, touring Australia, New Zealand, Asia,… Read more »

Reviews / River Waiting – Connla

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connla

Those who contributed to Northern Irish band Connla’s Kickstarter campaign to record their debut album “River Waiting” will not be disappointed. This vibrant young band have produced an excellent set of self-penned songs and tunes, along with a few traditional and well-loved classics. Each band member has contributed original material to the album, creating an… Read more »

Reviews / Land Of Hope and Fury – Various Artists

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Land Of Hope And Fury

Protest music’s in fine fettle just now thanks to a reactionary government with increasingly bonkers policies, seemingly no grasp of reality and an obsession with selling off everything which provides a service for normal people. Sadly Billy Bragg will still have to wait a while longer for that Great Leap Forward. Waking in the cold… Read more »

Reviews / Back to the Yellow Hills – Richard Moss

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Richard Moss

Richard Moss’s new album “Back to the Yellow Hills” contains moments to make your heart beat that little bit faster. A fantastically accomplished guitarist and mandolin player and a member of bands such as Irish powerhouse band Drop the Floor, ceilidh band Union Street and duo Squirrels in Space, Moss’s album brilliantly captures the music… Read more »

Reviews / Shadows – O’Hooley & Tidow

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shadows O'hooley & Tidow

Belinda O’Hooley and Heidi Tidow continue to forge their own highly individual direction on their fifth album. Shadows has all of their trademark Northern bite, harmonies to die for and the deep empathy they have for each other and the subjects of their songwriting. The album also possesses a level of maturity over and above… Read more »

Reviews / The Bruce 700

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The Bruce 700

This is a live recording at Celtic Connections 2015 of a commission by Stirling Council to commemorate the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn. Composed, arranged and orchestrated by Allan MacDonald and Neil Johnstone. The Bruce involved the skills of the cream of Scottish musicianship from pipes to fiddles and everything in between –… Read more »

Reviews / Climb The Air – Hatful of Rain

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Climb The Air

Hatful of Rain epitomise the explosion of UK Americana artists who have grasped this living tradition of music that has travelled across the Atlantic over the past centuries to the Americas and is now enjoying the return trip. On its travels it has rubbed up against countless other musical styles, been shaped by familiar hands… Read more »

Reviews / The Natural Selection Australian Songbook – Bush Gothic

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Bush Gothic

Bush Gothic are band leader Jenny M. Thomas together with double bassist Dan Witton and drummer Chris Lewis. ‘The Natural Selection Australian Songbook’ contains ten Australian Folk songs that have been lovingly rearranged by the band… Hang on, that’s sounding a bit dry… try this; Jenny Thomas, along with her two accomplices have completely reinvented… Read more »