Sunday, 17 June 2012

LINK: Troy Donockley UK Review


Lantern 2012

Nah, me neither, but then I don't really keep up to speed with Irish pipers, despite my auld Irish mammy. Not that she would have thanked you for that description. But turns oot that Troy Donockley is a legendary uilleann piper both solo and as a member of Iona. Me, I'd only heard of him, because he tooted his pipes on the last (splendid) album by goth metal monsters Nightwish, and that he's off on tour with them. So it makes perfect sense for him to bung oot a best of album off the back of that.

The music on offer wanders all over the place from Celtic to prog to classical to alternative arrangements of auld tunes. He's also got a very large address book, and this compilation draws in contributions from the likes of Nick Beggs, Barbara Dickson, Heather Findlay, Tim Harries, Olivia Sparnenn and hunnerds of others.

It's in the nature of compilations from previously unheard artists that the quality can vary quite dramatically, but when it's good, it's very good indeed. So, plenty of highlights including the previously unreleased 'For Him Who Will Never Return', a traditional song here radically re-arranged. Then there's an extract from "Finlandia " by Sibelius, which features the Glorious Emperor String Quartet and which is, appropriately, glorious. The other new tune is 'Dunmail Rising', which comes complete with some serious fiddle, oboe and a great vocal from Mostly Autumn singer Olivia Sparnenn.

So, to be fair, a mixed old bag, but a bag with more caramel than toffee.

Here, as the returning Gonzo Daily editor, I would like to note that I like both caramel and toffee..

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