Ireland, 1974, Celtic folk

Mick Hanly & Mícheál Ó DomhnaillCeltic Folkweave: I discovered for myself and fell in love instantly many years ago with a little-known Irish folk album called Skara Brae by a group with the same name. The music is magical, from another time and place, but I never thought to explore further. After all, the band is a one-and-done group. I revisited the album recently and remembered that the band was made up for the most part of siblings. So I decided to check out one album by one of the brothers, and another by the sister. They sound nothing alike, strangely, though I can hear elements of Skara Brae in both their “solo” works. This album splits its time between English and Irish Gaelic, and the tunes run from meditative to jolly, with some fine guitar work. The closing track is powerful, and not just because of the unexpected percussion. The heart of this album’s joy, however, is “Breton Dances”, holding within it all that is magical about Breton Celtic folk.

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