• Music

    Musala nan Eilan – Glossolalia

    This is a charmingly freakish album from the French band Musala nan Eilan which has the audacity to combine post-rock with Celtic music, among other genres.  From the band’s Bandcamp site: “Five musicians who don’t know each other, coming from different musical worlds, finding themselves under the same roof for some weekends. Discovering each other, trying to understand each other, making everyone’s tastes and expectations collide. From these moments shared together a sort of musical glossolalia was born. A language specific to the five musicians, which none of them really understands. A clumsy praise to the clash of influences. An…

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    Plantec – Awen

    It’s a bit of a tragedy that Breton music doesn’t get the same healthy push as, say, Scottish or Irish music does.  Outside of the absolutely legendary Alan Stivell, it’s rare to hear of great music coming out of this most unique of French provinces.  Thankfully, we have Plantec to bring forth something that I suppose could qualify as electro-Breizh.  The music simply rips with expert playing of Breton bagpipes, but there’s something that makes the music incredibly punchy and even danceable.  Though this release is from around 2012, the band are still quite active today and continue to innovate…

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    Willos’ – From Now On

    Willos’ are an Italian/Irish/Canadian folk band currently based in lovely Siena, Italy.  The name of the band is a play on Will o’ the Wisp, the band’s original name.  According to their bio, a French journalist that named the band “les willos”, it the name stuck. The music is bright, fresh, and it would have been brilliant to play this four days ago on St. Patrick’s Day, but it’s perfect music to brighten up our rather dour weather here locally.  For those of you who enjoy bands like The Chieftains, Craobh Rua and Planxty, you’re going to enjoy the hell out…

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    Kalle – Under the Black Moss

    As we near the year’s end, I wish to thank my friend who goes by the name of Corvus who turned my on this group from the Czech Republic called Kalle.  They sound like a mashup of post-rock, Celtic or even folk-rock and alternative music, but still managing to sound fresh.  The female vocals are solid and inviting, and the music sounds crisp and well-recorded.  Quite nice!

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    Susana Seivane – Os Soños Que Volven

    Galicia is a land of gaiteros and gaiteras, bagpipers of fine quality.  Susana Seivane is one of the best of the newer generation, and she brings a raw, almost punk-like power to her performances.  This album is a more subdued affair, but she plays so well that the more controlled atmosphere does her music a service.

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    The Chieftains – Full of Joy / Paddy Moloney RIP

    The legendary uilleann piper and leader of The Chieftains, Paddy Moloney, is no more.  He passed away yesterday at the age of 83.  This is a big loss for the world of folk music. In his honor, we post a track that is near and dear to me.  The Chieftains toured China many years ago, and this is one of the tunes they brought back from the Middle Kingdom. May Paddy rest in peace.  You can read NPR’s obituary here. UPDATE: The Chinese title of this tune is “Xi Yang Yang” (喜洋洋) by Liu Mingyuan (刘明源, 1931-1996).

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    Ceoltóirí Chualann – Ríl Mhór Bhaile an Chalaidh

    Today is Saint Patrick’s Day for Western Christians, and is also celebrated by my fellow Orthodox, though his feast day on the Julian Calender is March 30. I thought I would share a bit of Irish music, but something not so common. I’m sure a great many of you know the work of Ireland’s third-most famous export (after Guinness Beer and U2), The Chieftains. They have toured the world bringing Celtic music to the masses, even making a legendary appearance at the Great Wall of China in 1983. The band got their start after the members of the above band, led…