Monday, November 24, 2014

Leahy - Leahy (Canada 2006) @320

Leahy is the name of a Canadian folk music group. The eight band members, all from the Leahy family of 11 siblings, are from Lakefield, Ontario and have been touring Canada and internationally since the early 1980s when they were known as The Leahy Family. In 1985, they were the subject of a short film entitled Leahy: Music Most of All which received an Academy Award in the category of "Best Foreign Student Film". The members of Leahy take great pride in their Irish roots and their Canadian upbringing.

The line-up of the group varies depending upon the availability of its members who come and go due to marriage, raising children, and other commitments. During the 1980s and early 1990s, the band recorded a number of privately released LPs and cassettes (most of which used the same title, The Leahy Family) which were sold at their concerts and they were frequent guests at the Big Valley Jamboree concerts in Saskatchewan and Alberta.

In 1997 the band resumed recording with their "relaunch" album, Leahy which also introduced the group's new branding. Leahy was an instrumental album, but the band also includes vocal performances in their live performances and subsequent albums have included both vocals and instrumentals.

Despite their established history, they were awarded two Juno awards in 1998, for Best New Group and Best Instrumental Artist The following year, Leahy took a third Juno Award, for Best Country Group or Duo. Also in 1998, Leahy were added as the opening act for Canadian country singer Shania Twain's 1998 Come on Over Tour and were featured in two television specials from the tour, Live and The Specials, performing with Twain on the song "Don't Be Stupid (You Know I Love You)".

The group's members are both instrumentalists and dancers, with several members skilled in fiddle-playing (most notably the group's best-known member, Donnell). The female members of the band often perform step-dancing-style routines and do most of the singing.

01. "B Minor" (Traditional) – 3:55
02. "Cape Breton Medley" (R. Cooper, Wiley Hunter, Jr., Traditional) – 5:11
03. "McBrides" (Dónal Lunny, Declan Sinnott) – 4:15
04. "The French" (Traditional) – 4:39
05. "The Call to Dance" (Gordon Duncan, Howie MacDonald) – 4:05
06. "Alabama" (G. Cahn, Ned Landry, J. Yeffen) – 3:40
07. "Don Messer Medley" (Don Messer, Traditional) – 3:05
08. "Csárdás" (Traditional) – 4:04
09. "Colm Quigley" (Donnell Leahy, Traditional) – 6:02
10. "The Coulin" (Traditional) – 4:44

Donnell Leahy — Fiddle
Erin Leahy — Piano, Guitar, Fiddle, Mandolin, Vocals, Bass
Angus Leahy — Fiddle
Maria Leahy — Guitar, Banjo, Vocals
Siobheann Donohue (née Leahy) — Bass, Vocals, Fiddle
Doug Leahy — Fiddle
Denise Flack (née Leahy) — Vocals
Frank Leahy — Drums

Lau - Lightweights & Gentlemen (Scotland/England 2007) @320

Recorded in the winter of 2006, Lau's debut album, LIGHTWEIGHTS AND GENTLEMEN, sound like men willing to redefine how a trio can sound. Arming themselves with both highly original repertoire and some superb takes on traditional song, their fearless appetite for imrpov digs deep into a wild array of genres and spits them out as a perfect folk-jazz stew.

01 - Hinba.mp3
02 - Butcher boy.mp3
03 - The Jigs.mp3
04 - Results.mp3
05 - Unquiet Grave.mp3
06 - Souter creek.mp3
07 - Kris's.mp3
08 - Freeborn Man.mp3
09 - Moorhens.mp3
10 - Gallowhill.mp3
11 - Twa Stewarts (bonus track).mp3

Kris Drever - guitar, vocals
Martin Green - accordion
Aidan O'Rourke - fiddle

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Lau - Race the Loser (Scotland/England 2012) @320

The most musically adventurous trio in British folk team up with Tucker Martine, the US producer who has worked with REM and Gillian Welch, and the results are perhaps predictably unexpected. Lau are a remarkable band, particularly live, thanks to their stirring, complex, partly improvised compositions and the virtuoso interplay between fiddle, accordion and guitar. The new element here is electronic music: it is used to create percussive effects that are matched against their instrumental work on the ambient Far from Portland (a tribute to Martine's home city), or against Kris Drever's vocals on the sturdy Saint Monday, one of several songs dealing with industrial decay and hard times. But as ever with Lau, the mood constantly changes. Save the Bees switches from sombre to cheerful and back, while Torsa is a gentle, then upbeat example of Lau's exquisite and hypnotic musicianship at its best.

01 - Saint Monday.mp3
02 - Far From Portland.mp3
03 - The Bird That Winds The Spring.mp3
04 - Missing Pieces.mp3
05 - Save The Bees.mp3
06 - Torsa.mp3
07 - Throwing Pennies.mp3
08 - Noltland Castle.mp3
09 - Beer Engineer.mp3

Kris Drever - guitar, vocals
Martin Green - accordion
Aidan O'Rourke - fiddle

Lau - Arc Light (Scotland/England 2009) @320

Arc Light is the second studio album by contemporary folk three-piece Lau, released on March 30, 2009 on Navigator Records.

The album's bonus track is a cover of The Beatles' song, "Dear Prudence". The track originally appeared on a compilation issued free with Mojo magazine.

Like its predecessor, Lightweights and Gentlemen, Arc Light garnered strong critical acclaim upon release. Chris Nickson of Allmusic described the album as "stirring and utterly wonderful," while Michael Quinn, of BBC Music remarked that "what astonishes most about Lau is the orchestral quality of the sound." Music webzine The Line of Best Fit stated that: "Arc Light is testament to their constant need to push themselves as musicians, and as innovators of the folk movement."

01 - The Burrian
02 - Winter Moon
03 - Horizontigo
04 - Salty Boys
05 - Banks of Marble
06 - Stephen's
07 - The Master
08 - Frank and Flo's
09 - Temple of Fiddes
10 - Dear Prudence

Kris Drever - guitar, vocals
Martin Green - accordion
Aidan O'Rourke - fiddle

Additional musicians:
Stuart Nisbet - pedal steel guitar
Corrina Hewat - backing vocals
Karine Polwart - backing vocals
Inge Thomson - backing vocals

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Charming Axe - Gathering Days (2014 USA) Free Group Promotion


The New Album, Gathering Days is the band’s favorite collection of covers and original songs about Love: Pining for it, Reveling in it and Losing it. These are tunes that Rob, Eugenia and Hannah have faithfully crafted over the last 15 years after meeting at Chicago’s own Old Town School of Folk Music. 

Their long awaited album by fans, produced by Rich Rankin, is a treat for the ears with lush harmony and rich instrumentation, featuring some of Chicago’s best musicians including Scott Stevenson, John Rice, Ben Wright and Colby Maddox to name a few.

released 01 June 2014

More Info & Listen here

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Skolvan - C'hoari Pevar (Bretagne 2010) @VBR200

Re-uploaded by request

One of the top bands on the Breton dance music scene, Skolvan uses fiddle, bombarde, guitar, and more to create rousing and intricate arrangements of Breton music.

1. Daou Ha Daou - Kas A Barh
2. Nilizien – Kost Er C’hoed
3. Salud Dit Lanig – Air De Marche
4. Le Loup Pendu – Rond De Loudeac
5. La Grive Et Lat Carpe- Baleu
6. La Brousse – Rond De Loudeac
7. Hanter Noz – Cercle Circassien
8. La Côte D’en Haut – Rond De St. Vincent
9. Lammig An Noz – Melodie
10. Le Compte Est Bon! – Ridee
11. Pont Morvan – Gavotte Des Montagnes
12. Ebrel 84 – Tamm Kreiz
13. Lannuson – Gavotte Des Montagnes

Youenn Le Bihan: piston
Bernard Le Dréau: saxophone soprano
Gilles Le Bigot: guitare, tambura
Régis Huiban : accordéon

Monday, May 19, 2014

Various Artists - Icelandic Folk Music (Instrumental Version of Íslandsklukkur) (Iceland 1996) @320

Icelandic music has a very long tradition, with some songs still sung today dating from 14th century. Folk songs are often about love, sailors, masculinity, hard winters, and elves, trolls and other hidden people. They tend to be quite secular and often humourous. Bjarni Þorsteinsson collected Icelandic folk music between 1906 and 1909. Many of the songs he encountered were accompanied by traditional instruments like the langspil and fiðla. Chain dances, known as víkivaki, have been performed in Iceland since the 11th century at a variety of occasions, such as in churches and during the Christmas season. An example is "Ólafur Liljurós", an Icelandic víkivaki folk song dating to the 14th century, about a man on his way to meet his mother who is seduced, kissed and stabbed by an elf woman while riding his horse, then eventually dies.

01 - Íslandsklukkur (Ýmsir Hljóðfæraleikarar)
02 - Á Sprengisandi (Bergþór Pálsson)
03 - Dýravisur (Voces Thules)
04 - Ólafur Liljurós (Eggert Pálsson, Magnús Þór Sigmundsson And Kristjana Stefánsdóttir)
05 - Ísland Farsælda Frón (Voces Thules)
06 - Íslandsljóð (Ragnar Davíðsson)
07 - Tröllaslagur (Voces Thules)
08 - Tyrkjaránið (Icelandic Folk Music)
09 - Fann Ég Á Fjalli (Óskasteinar) (Sverrir Guðjónsson)
10 - Sofa Urtubörn (Kristjana Stefánsdóttir)
11 - Bí Bí Og Blaka (Kristjana Stefánsdóttir)
12 - Heyr Himnasmiður (Sverrir Guðjónsson)
13 - Allsherjargoðinn Kvaddur (Magnús Þór Sigmundsson)
14 - Ó, Mín Flaskan Fríða (Voces Thules)
15 - Völuvisa (Kristjana Stefánsdóttir)
16 - Sá Ég Spóa (Voces Thules)
17 - Sofðu Unga Ástin Mín (Bergþór Pálsson)
18 - Krummavísur (Voces Thules)
19 - Íslandsvindar (Magnús Þór Sigmundsson)
20 - Lilja (Voces Thules)
21 - Maístjarnan (Steinunn Ólína Þorsteinsdóttir)
22 - Ísland Er Land Þitt (Icelandic Folk Music)

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Brain Damage Updates

Hi folks!
There are some new updates in Brain Damage blog, my other Music Blog.
If you like ProgRock, AvantProg, RIO and Fusion, take a look there.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Steeleye Span - Wintersmith (England 2013) @320

Steeleye Span’s latest offering is a collaboration with none other than Terry Pratchett, best known for his the Discworld series of novels. Terry is a self-declared Spanner and has been since his adolescence: “my mate Dave put me between two huge speakers and turned everything up to eleven. He played Boys of  Bedlam until the chimney wobbled”. He’s been hooked ever since. Steeleye Span also played at Terry’s sixtieth birthday, it was after hearing that Maddy was a fan of his work that he proposed a collaboration to weave in some words of his own into their songs. The result is Wintersmith an album that is already topping the Amazon English folk album charts!

Wintersmith is a concept album based on Pratchett’s Tiffany Aching series so those of you that have read the novels will be familiar with the 13 years old Tiffany who in Wintersmith joins in the secret dark morris, the morris dance performed wearing black clothes and octiron bells that welcomes in the winter. She ends up coming face to face with the very face of winter himself. You can’t miss the cover which features Dark Morris on a backdrop of winter woods, the perfect eye-catching image for the tales of ancient rituals and secret folk dances that lie within.
Although the album can still be enjoyed without having read the novels, those that have will form an instant association with the songs. This comes as a bonus as you’ll understand the significance of songs through characters such as The Summer Lady with whom Tiffany shares some powers.

This is folk rock and in places, especially in the opening it is with a capital ‘R’. A quick grab for the sleeve notes reveals that production was handed to Chris Tsangarides who has names such as Thin Lizzy, Judas Priest, Black Sabbath and Gary Moore under his belt…well, if you’re going to rock you may as well do it right.

Before you run for the hills there are folkier offerings such as ‘You‘ which features the Northumbrian Pipes of guest musician Kathryn Tickell. Band of Teachers also hikes up the folk offering still more with the help of Maddy’s fine vocals, lovely harmonies, a catchy rhythm and Peter Knight’s fine dancing fiddle solo. Besides Kathryn other guests feature including John Spiers on Melodeon and of course Terry Pratchett on vocals whose spoken words on ‘The Good Witch‘ will bring a smile to the face of many Pratchett fans as he talks of the loneliness and hard work involved in being a witch.

The album, despite the dark elements also has lighter moments which will be more obvious to those that know the characters such as the Nac Mac Feegle who are best described as Glaswegian fairy folk who like to drink and fight.

As a concept album it has that feel of being made for a stage production and I’m not suggesting it will become one but with sixteen tracks on offer it must have crossed peoples minds! Spanners will be pleased with the album and Pratchett fans will also be heading for it in droves. There will no doubt be some crossover along the way with CDs and novels exchanging hands…a perfectly matched offering!


01 - Overture
02 - The Dark Morris Song
03 - Wintersmith
04 - You
05 - The Good Witch
06 - Band of Teachers
07 - The Wee Free Men
08 - Hiver
09 - Fire & Ice
10 - The Making of a Man
11 - Crown of Ice
12 - First Dance
13 - The Dark Morris Tune
14 - The Summer Lady
15 - Ancient Eyes
16 - We Shall Wear Midnight

Maddy Prior: vocals
Peter Knight: violin, keyboard, vocals
Rick Kemp: bass, vocals
Liam Genockey: drums, percussion
Julian Littman: electric guitars, vocals
Pete Zorn: acoustic guitar, mandolin, vocals, saxophone
Terry Pratchett: Voice
Kathryn Tickell: Noerthumbrian Pipes
Bob Johnson: Vocals
John Spiers: Melodeon

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Coriandre - Viu (en concert) [France 2013] @320

1. Esperança - Scottish
2. Itinerança - Bourrée à 2 temps
3. Divergence - Chapelloise
4. L'estaca - Valse
5. Borreia del Danisson - Bourrée à 3 temps
6. Lo Coquin de Pire - Rondeau
7. Pile et Face - Scottish/Valse
8. La Prima - Cercle circassien
9. Si on se cache - Mazurka
10. Le Piton - Fandango
11. L'envol - Arin arin
12. Dins lo Desert - Rigodon
13. La Marmita d'oc - Bourrée à 2 temps
14. La Grava de Bordèu - Ronde du Quercy
15. Présentations

Alex ROUX : basse, avaquinho, choeurs
Denis GALVIER : flûtes, saxos, hautbois languedocien, chalémie, chant
Julien REGI : guitare, bouzouki, percussions, chant
Philippe PUYGRENIER : vielles à roue, boha, gaïta, chant
Vivian PERES : batterie, percussions, choeurs

Friday, April 11, 2014

Duo Eric Liorzou - Thomas Bocher - An dre nevez [France/Bretagne 2012] @320

Re-uped by request.
Originally posted by Yojik

1. Ton bale an dre nevez 4:41
2. E pardon Speiet 4:46
3. Cinq, vingt, cent ! 5:43
4. Seven gurdies 4:58
5. Tournez, tournez donc 4:38
6. Scottige de huit 4:18
7. Rond des vous à Loudia 4:20
8. Le bal du Bourbon 2:00
9. La rondcontre 3:44
10. La rondqueniée 2:02
11. Jakez Patatez 4:17
12. La compil' est menue 9:32
13. Y'a plus d'saisons 5:02

Eric Liorzou Vocal and guitars
Started learning guitar at the age of nine, joined the  Bagad Brest Sant Mark (Breton Pipe Band ) to study the scottisch snare drum.He played with them for over ten years ...
In 1973, he co-founded the band BLEIZI RUZ and became a professionnal musician in 1980.
Since then, he has played his guitars in Festou-Noz (Breton dance feasts) and festivals both in  Brittany and  all over the world.
He has composed, played, recorded or produced over 30 (albums) records (and CDs) with Bleizi Ruz and other artists such as : Jake Walton, Hopi Hopkins, Patrick Ewen, JL Roudaut, Leilia, Jakez Ar Borgn, Loar Gann.....
Over the last years, he has developed his singing, especially to serve the dancing répertoire. Today and more than ever, his guitars are still ringing 


Thomas Bocher Flutes, saxophones and vocals
Thomas was very young when he first discovered the Festou-Noz, and improved his breton dancing with the Paimpol Cercle Celtique Angéla Duval.
He joined the Bagad of Paimpol to learn the bombard, before moving to what  became his main instrument : the wooden flute.
In 1994 in started teaching flute at the Lannion Cultural Center and at Paimpol School of Music.
A few years later, he took part in jazz workshops at St Brieuc Conservatory to improve rythm, harmony and improvisation.
Through various experiments and meetings, he became more and more comfortable with many different styles of music, composition, and recording. He has now added alto and soprano saxophones as well as singing to his many skills.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

The end of way

My Dear Friends.

Folk Yourself blog is coming to end.
The Rapidshare host has now a new platform of prices wich one is completely abusive.
The price will be changed in 500%. Nobody, as a single client (like me), would have conditions to pay this value.
My account will expire on 5-June-2014. 
So, try to get the maximum quantity of albums before this date.
I don't know what RS will do with the files after that, probably they will be deleted.

Really a pity.


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Norbert Pignol - Silence [1999 France] @192

Infant terrible of the gernaoble scene and 'self taught' improviser, Actually he's really hot on the 'theory'! Accordéonist Norbert has starred in groups Dédale, Obsession, as a duo with Stéphane Milleret and solo. His recent (2012) gigs tend to be either solo or with Stéph in MKF trio. He's run the French Improvisation course in val d'Isere for over 25 years. Into jazz and free expression of all sorts, but always grounded in the French tradition and at his best about 1.00 am.

01. Arsenic au vin rouge
02. Tant qu'elle fredonne !
03. Diatonium
04. Silence
05. Les rails du destin
06. Chansonnette perturbée
07. Sonatrad (invention en Ré majeur pour orchestre alliant musique 

traditionnelle, improvisation et forme sonate)

Norbert Pignol: (diatonic accordion), compositions

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Sylvain Barou - Sylvain Barou [2012 France] @256

FY: Fantastic album, Enjoy it!!

"Sylvain Barou is undoubtedly one of the greatest flute players of his generation. He has recorded his first solo release in 2012 on which he invites some of the biggest names in traditional music today. An album at the crossroads between Celtic (irish & breton) and oriental music. Finally a more personal work after having worked with the top musicians of the scene and participating to about 50 albums as a guest soloist. 
A promising album, an outstanding crew !"

"Sylvain Barou, the breton flute phenomenon, released this solo album in April 2012, he describes it a log book of the work of the last 10 years. Breton and irish music are well represented of course, but Middle eastern influences also bring colors to this magnificent release. A true masterpiece for a debut solo album."

01 - The Naga Jigs
02 - Horos
03 - Margaretig (intro)
04 - Ton Doubl Plinn
05 - Mare Nostrum
06 - The Windy Set
07 - Ridées
08 - Esfahan
09 - Alborada
10 - Mélodie Kozh
11 - Shah Kokojaan
12 - JD's reels
13 - Kreiz an douar

Sylvain Barou: flute
Dónal Lunny: bouzouki, bodhràn 
Jacques Pellen: 12 strings guitar 
Ronan Pellen: cittern 
Julien Stevenin: double bass 
Keyvan Chemirani: percussion (zarb, daff) 
Prabhu Edouard: tabla, kanjira 
Gilles Le Bigot: guitar 
Youenn Le Bihan: bombarde 
John Doyle: guitar 
Liz Carroll: fiddle 
Ed Boyd: guitar 
Stelios Petrakis: lyra, lavta 
Hamid Reza Khabbazi: tar 
Florian Baron: oud 
Rubén Bada: bouzouki 
Alain Genty: fretless bass 
Padraig Rynne: concertina 
Paul McSherry: guitar 
Méabh O'Hare: fiddle 

Donal Lunny's liner notes on the CD:
"In the course of my musical career - particularly in the earlier 
years, I have wandered in and out of many different genres of music. 
Looking back on the journey, it feels like just that; a meandering 
exploration which lacked a particular direction until one day I 
realised that I was more connected with Irish music than any 
other.From then on, the itinerary became simpler; a more direct route, 
but not without occasional diversions into other regions, which 
helped, and still help to replenish my passion for music generally. 
Extending the analogy of travel and exploration to Sylvain, I think of 
him as a mountaineer. Not only is he avidly interested in music from 
every corner of the world, but he also seeks out challenges; peaks of 
musical achievement which can normally only be accessed by musicians 
who have been born into their particular culture, and who have served 
arduous apprenticeships in their chosen disciplines. Reaching these 
heights demands a degree of musicality one encounters only 
This album is an exotic collection of music by any standards. In the 
traditional tunes, the listening experience is all the more intense 
and exhilarating because of the depth to which Sylvain has penetrated 
the culture from which each piece originates. And in the treatment of 
the newly composed pieces, the buoyant dynamic power and fluidity of 
the playing is obvious. 
The ongoing pursuit of musical knowledge and technique will continue 
to inform and improve Sylvain's playing in different ways; most 
importantly it will enable him to keep giving joy and pleasure to 
those who listen to his unique voice. I feel honoured to share this 
part of his great journey." 

Dónal Lunny 
Jan 2012

produced by Jérôme Nédélec/Aremorica Records 

Recorded and mixed by Sylvain Barou  
Mastered by Marco Migliari - Realworld Studios, UK

Tannas - Suilean Dubh [1999 Scotland] @192

I do not know whether it is quiet in Scotland, having come no closer to that fabled land than the odd can of Tennant's Strong Lager. I do know that there is little quiet, little peace, where I live; each nap, every reverie is subject to clamorous intrusion by emergency vehicle sirens, cruising hip-hop sub-woofers, even the pop and rattle of gunfire. Provided I play it loud enough, this second release from Tannas, the duo of Amy Geddes and Sandra Mackay, offers 46 minutes of aural asylum from urban America. And no matter how loudly "Suilean Dubh" 
played, a deep peace flows from its traditional and traditionally styled pieces, updated for the new millennium by fine supporting musicians with electric guitars, synthesized keyboards, creative percussion, and loops. This paradoxical peace is not of the insipid New Age sort, living musical traditions melted into anonymity by synthesized solvent, but the result of carefully calibrated instrumental production, and especially of Mackay's pretty lead vocals, calming even on lively numbers, assuming an aching and fragile loveliness in harmony with those of Geddes.

"Suilean Dubh" is unique in its tasteful melding of contemporary and traditional Celtic musical influences, neither sacrificed in the bargain

Jim Foley (

01. Suilean Dubh 
02. Seallaibh Curaigh Eoghainn - The Lochaber Badger 
03. Andy's Saltire - Fear a Bhios Fada Gun Phosadh 
04. Illean a I 
05. Bi Falbh O'n Uinneig 
06. 'S Toigh Leam Cruinneag Dhonn Nam Bo (Tribute to Na H-Oganaich)
07. Catharis - Haighaidh - Lexy Macaskill
08. Air a' Ghille tha mo Run
09. Caitlin
10. Thoir Dhomh do Lamh - Ruidhleadh na Coilich Dhubha
11. Buain na Rainich

Friday, March 28, 2014

Tannas - Rù-Rà [1996 Scotland] @320

Gaelic music is hard to come by in the early 21st century, but the Scottish band Tannas is one of the genre's most earnest supporters. The multi-membered band has received rave reviews from the likes of the European magazine Q (they were picked as one of the top five folk albums in 1995), won the Interceltique Folk Group Competition at L'Orient in 1995, and has taken album of the year honors by major Italian radio stations. While the band has appeared on several different compilations along other artists (1996's Rough Guide to Scottish Music, 1999's Celtic Voices, etc.), Tannas has also recorded 1995's Oighreachd (Heritage), 1996's Ru Ra and 1999's Suilean Dubh (Dark Eyes).

01 - Mairead Nan Cuiread / The Bob Parsons Strathspey
02 - O Ho Na Ribeannan / Sean Truibhas / Faca Tu Saor An T-Sabhaidh
03 - The Old Hags Set / Lucy Cassidy / Ruidhleadh Cailleach / An Drochaid Chluiteach / The Smith Of Killiechassie
04 - Nach Fhreagair Thu, Cairistiona
05 - Cum 'Ur Gealladh
06 - 'Si Morag
07 - Coill' An Fhasaich
08 - 'N Uair Bha Mi Na Mo Mhaighdinn / B'fhearr Mar A Bha Mi'n Uiridh
09 - Mrs. Mary Stitt
10 - Caillte A Chaoidh

Sandra and Doreen MacKay (sisters): Vocals
Malcom Stitt: guitar, bouzouki, highland pipes
Julia Legge: Fiddle, backing vocals

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Tannas - Oighreachd [1994 Scotland] @320

Brilliant! What a debut album this is from Tannas, a five piece band who met while playing in Edinburgh's session scene. Tannas are: vocalists Sandra and Doreen Mackay (sisters), fiddler Julia Legge, Jason Dove on keyboards/accordion and Mike Garden on guitars, with guest percussionists Jimmy MacLeod and Stevie Lawrence.

The sound Tannas produce is pure, clear and peaceful. The voices soft and true, the instrumentation calm and uncomplicated. The album is well balanced, with twelve tracks split between nine Gaelic songs and three instrumentals, some being sets. You will hear mouth music, at least one waulking song and a song which was originally a piobaireachd (piper's lament). Most of the tracks are traditional pieces arranged by Tannas but also included are songs by the MacDonald brothers of Runrig, the Melbost Bard Murdo MacFarlane, a lyric by Ewan MacColl and a reel by Phil Cunningham. In our opinion the most beautiful song is "Canan nan Gaidheal" - The Language of the Gaels, which opens the album. The vocal is ethereal and a stunning bass drum like a heartbeat cuts in after the first verse.

We understand this is the first of the three album deal Tannas have signed with Klub Records, the next is due in August 1995 and we really can't wait. We thought of making comparisons with other more established bands but this album by Tannas deserves to stand alone. We hope they continue to make such beautiful music together for a long time to come.

01 - Canan Nan Gaidheal
02 - Sabhal Ia'n Ic Uisdean
03 - Abu Chuibhl
04 - Look Behind You
05 - Tuireadhiain Ruaidh
06 - The Battle Of Waterloo
07 - The Session Set
08 - Eilean Beag Donn A Chuain
09 - A Fhleasgaich Oig Bi Furachail
10 - Bodachan Cha Phos Mi
11 - Cearcall A Chuain
12 - Cha Teid Fionnlagh A Dh'eige

Sandra and Doreen Mackay (sisters): Vocals, fiddler
Julia Legge, Jason Dove: keyboards/accordion
Mike Garden: guitars
Jimmy MacLeod and Stevie Lawrence: Percussion

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Maria Kalaniemi & Timo Alakotila - Åkerö [2012 Finland] @VBR

Accordionist Maria Kalaniemi and pianist Timo Alakotila have been working together for more than two decades. During this highly active and productive period collabrating in many formations,most notably as prime components in the contemporary acoustic ensemble Aldargaz,Maria's and Timo's musical alliance has grown as tight and as complimentary as can be imagined.Simultaneously soloists and accompanists,with instruments themselves that are both solo and accompanying instruments,Maria and Timo play extraordinarily sympathetically with each other,both deeply sensitive to the roles and relations of each other's hands,as if all four were part of the same being.
During these twenty years of playing,performing,composing and arranging together,each element of Maria's and Timo's musical style and character,individually and collectively,has matured:their virtuosy continues to improve to increasingly staggering levels while the delicate melodic force of their arrangements and compositions grows ever more potent.The ease and lightness of the performances creates a feeling of space and timelessness
that,like all Timo's and Maria's music,seduces and subdues like nothing else.

01 - Åkerö
02 - Syyssoitto
03 - Koskaan et muuttua saa
04 - Kaipaus
05 - Viola
06 - Yötuulet
07 - Kohti Pispalaa
08 - Trädet
09 - Grönbacka
10 - Kengo-Antas vals
11 - Ta in hiid in fiol
12 - Vaiennut viulu
13 - Silta
14 - Soittajan kaipuu

Maria KALANIEMI: Accordéon
Tero LINDBERG: Trompette
Heikki POHTO: Saxophone alto
Antti RISSANEN: Trombone
Anssi NYKÄNEN: Drums, Percussion.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Startijenn - El-TaQa [2013 France / Bretagne] @320

For a long time, Startijenn was this band of ultra-talented teen-agers, full of energy (startijenn in breton language ), that fired-up fest-noz, powerfully mixing traditionnal music and rock. These young lads brought a fresh and new sound into the fest-noz field, but also into world music. Fifteen years later the kids have grown, and their talent also. Their minds and ears open on the world, and thanks to the hundreds of musical encounters that ponctuated their musical carrier, they integrated to their original sound different inspirations drawn from music from all over the world. (La Carene - Concert Hall) Fifteen years after their beginnings, and after performing all over Europe, the most rock'n'roll band of the fest-noz scene decided to reinvent itself, to reinterpret their most well known tunes for a new show called El-TaQa. The singer Sofiane Saidi, inspired by Cheika Rimiti, Oum Kalthoum, Otis Redding, incorporates his voice and his language to the compositions of the breton musicians. On stage, his charisma, his rap and traditional style will surprise the audience. Between breton and algerian music, rock and hip-hop : we promise you a heated atmosfere.
(Sylvain Girault - Festival Eurofonik)

01. Mwalfa (6:08)   
02. Istakhbar (2:21)   
03. Pakit holl Sidi Bel Abbès (6:44)      
04. Ketrou lefkar (8:08)   
05. Hir ! (6:40)
06. Noz ar zapaj (5:06)
07. Gamil El-TaQa (5:40)
08. Droug-red (5:58)
09. Gasbah El-TaQa (6:47)

Tangi LE GALL-CARRE : button accordion
Tangi OILLO : guitar
Youn ROUE : bombarde & voice
Lionel LE PAGE : biniou, bombard & uilleann-pipes
Kaou GWENN : percussions

Sofiane SAIDI : singing (Natacha Atlas, Yog Sototh, Tukuleur, Naab)
Jérôme KERIHUEL : percussions (Didier Squiban)
Erwan MOAL : electric guitar (Le Bour-Bodros Quintet, Kadja, Christian Lemaître)
Erwan VOLANT : bass guitar (Olli & the Bollywood Orchestra, Hamon-Martin Quintet, Gilles Le Bigot, Sylvain Barou)

Friday, February 21, 2014

Camerata Meiga - Habelas Hailas [1999 Spain] @320

A tip from our friend Aqualung

Galician traditional music has seen a remarkable advancement lately. Yet, in most cases, people have tended to set their eyes and ears on sounds very much influenced by Celtic music and 70s folk music. However, the members of Camerata Meiga try to approach traditional music without any preconceptions. All influences are deemed valid. Much in the same way, the instrumental forces they use, the choice of repertoire and the resolution of rhythms are born of crossbreeding and of the breaking of any imposed boundaries between musical fields.

Camerata Meiga started off as the natural development of a previous musical existence as Xeque Mate (Checkmate). They had recorded two albums under that name: Paisaxes (Landscapes, Clave Records, 1995) and Alén da lenda (Beyond legend, Ediciones Resistencia, 1997). Both recordings and the band’s live tours garnered applause from the critics and were very well received by the public.The result of the musical evolution of its members and their joining forces with three new musicians is this new vision of Galician music which goes by the name of Camerata Meiga.

The musicians in Camerata Meiga have an extended background in Music, written with a capital M, because they find no real differences in it, but just a mere convenient way of pigeonholing: folk, traditional, classical, pop, and so on. 

Between March and May 1999 Camerata Meiga recorded their first CD for Ediciones Resistencia. It benefits from the collaboration of Portuguese singer Amélia Muge and Juan Alberto Arteche as producer. The title of the album, Habelas hailas, refers to a popular saying in Galicia: Meigas (witches) do not exist, but... «habelas hailas» (there are definitely some of them around).

Camerata Meiga’s live debut took place in January 1999 at the Ninth New Music Festival in León, followed by a show at the Jerez Folk Festival 99.

01 - Praza Do Ferro
02 - A Tentacao
03 - Brincadeira
04 - Ai La!
05 - Bailai Ben
06 - Camino De Prata
07 - Danza Do Entroido
08 - Da Follina Dunha Rosa
09 - Canto De Sereas
10 - Introduccion E Jota Do Obradoiro
11 - Marcha Do Pelegrin
12 - Adios Meu Menino, ¡Adios!
13 - Mare Vostrum
14 - Hora Meiga

José Amador: violin
Nacho Casas: sax and recorder
Víctor Gil: cello, mandolin, rebec and guitar
Carlos Iglesias: piano, accordion, guitar and Egyptian oud
Miguel Forneiro: marimba, keyboards, accordion, bagpipe
Rubén Giorgis: double bass
Tino Mojón: percussion

Monday, January 27, 2014

Hoven Droven - Grov (Sweden-1996) [Folk-Rock] @320

Re-uploaded by request

Hoven Droven's music is a unique and powerful blend of traditional folk and fierce hard rock, where violin and electric guitar duel for the audience's attention. A diverse background created by sax, drums, percussion and bass complements this combination. Keywords: power, finesse and playful virtuosity.

The band's name is a slang phrase which means "whatever" (at least in their home province of Jämtland in northern Sweden). In their case, it could just as well mean; "things will take care of themselves." Despite sometimes chaotic organizational methods, none of them are able to explain how they have managed to perform on almost every major Swedish television and radio program and in North America. Looking at their individual schedules, it's a wonder that the band can get together to play at all.

01 - Slentbjenn
02 - Timas Hans
03 - Myhropolska
04 - Grovhalling (Sample in right panel)
05 - Tjangel
06 - Okynnesvals
07 - Klarinettpolska
08 - Grottan
09 - Kerstins Brudpolska
10 - LP-Schottis
11 - Skvadern
12 - Stilla
13 - Jamtlandssangsvalsen

Gustav Hylén: Trumpet
Kjell-Erik: Eriksson Fiddle
Pedro Blom: Bass
Björn Höglund: Drums, Percussion
Jens Comén: Saxophone
Bo Lindberg: Guitar, Accordion

Monday, January 20, 2014

Pekel - Mannen Van De Maas [1993 Netherlands] @192

Uploaded by request

The ensemble Pekel performs exuberant folk music from the Low Lands in its own
inimitable contemporary style. In Pekel’s set of instruments, we find traditional instruments like bagpipes, Jew’s harps, and flutes, but also “new” instruments like accordion, guitar, and double-bass.

The ensemble's name comes from a liquor that local fishermen used to drink.

Pekel was founded in 1990 and now (2013) consists of 5 musicians. The members
all are professional musicians since time immemorial, and have recorded many LPs and CDs in various ensembles (notably Perelaar).  Pekel is playing in theatres, schools, at fairs and banquets, as well as festivals worldwide.

The musicians of Pekel are not only interested in old Dutch sources, but also in the music recorded by ethnomusicologists during the 1950s and 1960s. However they like to apply modern popular music theories to their essentially traditional repertoire. In recent years they have included more and more own compositions into their repertoire. A fair part of Pekel’s repertoire consists of instrumental dance music (polka’s, waltzes, madlots).

01 - De Kermis
02 - Te Haarlem in Den Houte
03 - Koos en Toos
04 - Mannen Van de Maas
05 - Smouse Groenmarkt
06 - Jan Mijne Man / We Hebben Een Vos, Een Wolf en Een Haas
07 - Oue Mazurka / Luchtige Maagden
08 - Gabriel en Janneke
09 - Lage Landen / KlompendansDe Rommelpot
10 - De Troubadour
11 - Pelgrimstocht
12 - Ik Klom de Boom Al Oppe / Juzaine
13 - Anna Jacoba

John Bazuijnen: Vocals, double bass, guitar.
Peter Moree: Vocals, guitar, charango, recorder, bells.
Kees Wagenaar: Vocals, accordion, hrdy-gurdy.
Theo Schuurmans: Vocals, bagpipies, harp, tinwhistle, woodwhistle, flute, 
bodhran, percussion.
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