Eoghan Ó Ceannabháin : The Deepest BreathPosted : 24.11.2021
It’s a year since Dublin based sean-nós singer and multi-instrumentalist Eoghan Ó Ceannabháin released Solas an Lae, the sublime raw-folk debut solo album he recorded with Ultan O’Brien (fiddle, viola).
Solas an Lae is a revelatory record - spare enchantment and sparks of magic defining a remarkable set of songs that deliver immediate, visceral emotional impact.
The understated film above, shot in a kitchen by Myles O’Reilly, captures the singer in full voice, gracefully framed by Kaitlin Cullen-Verhauz and Ian Kinsella. It was uploaded a few months before the Solas an Lae’s release, and features a self-written piece not on the album, with a poetic lyric underlining the writer’s core beliefs - a committed eco-socialist, Eoghan is a full-time, activist member of the Irish political party ‘People Before Profit’. The song ends in a statement of where hope can still be found and sustained, with its last line - ‘Our dreams are the deepest breath we draw’.
Run the video for the first time, and you sense from the first note that the performance is going to be special. No disappointment awaits - this is real, hefted contemporary folk music, and it is utterly compelling to watch.
New : Papur Wal : Amser Mynd AdraPosted : 09.10.2021
Cardiff based trio Papur Wal have released a flawless debut. Melody, melancholy and elemental pop rapture; Amser Mynd Adra is a treasure trove of songs to keep close in bleak times. [Read More]
New : Findlay Napier : It Is What It IsPosted : 01.10.2021
This beguiling new album, his fourth solo release, reaffirms Findlay Napier as a distinct and cultivated singer-songwriter, with a spirited voice all of his own. [Read More]
New : V4VelindrePosted : 27.09.2021
V4Velindre is a mix tape for the NHS, curated by Kevin McGrath, a Welsh music writer, for the benefit of his local cancer centre.
There are 44 tracks, and they are often absurdly good. Just forcing your ears past the opening T-Rex on a waltzer brilliance of Bandicoot to reach eventually the beatific acoustic haze of Matthew Frederick’s Hay on Wye is a hard task. A superbly crafted compilation. [Read More]
New : Eve Goodman : Wave Upon Wave EPPosted : 12.09.2021
Eve Goodman has confirmed her status as an artist hard on a road to somewhere; Wave Upon Wave is an exquisite release, created from nothing but wisdom, light and grace. [Read More]
New : Khasi-Cymru Collective : 'Sai-thaiñ ki SurPosted : 05.09.2021
From a four year exploration of the traces of Welsh chapel influence on the culture of the Khasi Hills, Gareth Bonello and his Khasi collaborators have produced a fitting celebration of cultural connection; an album that is an earthen, life-affirming delight. [Read More]
From the Margins : 2020 Albums of the Year
- Welsh folk musician Angharad Jenkins, who plays fiddle in Calan and DnA, describes how two youthful cultural experiences shaped her future, and talks about the magic she found in an extraordinary one-man play about the life of one of Wales' towering political figures. [More]
- Ben Webb’s distinctive voice and songwriting are key elements of Brighton folk collective Bird in the Belly's brooding creative energy. He performs solo and writes as Jinnwoo - under that guise he is also one quarter of the sublime unaccompanied traditional song project, Green Ribbons. He details why Penda's Fen, Bird in the Bush and Sara Kane's Collected Plays are important landmarks in his cultural hinterland. [More]
- Co-founder of The Dark Mountain Project, novelist, poet and recovering environmentalist Paul Kingsnorth explains why three writers - Annie Dillard, Jack Gilbert and John Moriarty - have inspired his own work over the last decade. [More]
- Edgelarks are one of the British Isles most accomplished folk duos, bringing together exquisite instrumentation and voice, musical inventiveness and a poetic lyrical depth. Hannah Martin outlines why a book that maps the connection between the environment and our own folkloric identity, an experimental folk project and an inspirational Canadian festival are etched in her memory. [More]
- Bob Kettle sings, plays the mandolin and wears a top hat in England's most vital folk band, Merry Hell. He also writes superb songs. In a fascinating guest post Bob enthuses about Wigan Diggers Festival, author Laura Bates and the Shakespeare North Project. [More]
- Christina Alden is a third of Norwich based trio Alden,Patterson and Dashwood. A band noted for the humanity and warmth of their fusion of English and American folk, Christina chose a book that inspired a song and two albums that have illuminated her own musical path as key cultural moments. [More]
- The hallmark of Welsh folksinger Owen Shiers' music is a connection to place, culture and history - in this interview he details the impact of the mid-winter pagan tradition Mari Lwyd in Dinas Mawddwy, a memorable harvest party and a formative musical trip to West Africa on his work. [More]