An Bhábóg sa Bhádóg: Music from West Clare
“The ebb and flow of pace, the sadness permeating the liveliness and austerity of the solo instrument all create for me the musical and geographical landscape of West Clare.” (Kevin Crehan)
The five-star rating is reserved for a truly exceptional album, and I don't give it lightly, but this is very much the kind of recording that deserves it as far as I'm concerned. Not just everyone can pull off making an album of solo unaccompanied instrumental music, but Kevin Crehan's fiddle playing in the West Clare tradition is that good. The subtle nuances of his playing, his choice of material and his clever (in an inconspicuous kind of way) variations will keep the listener transfixed.
This is pure-drop Irish music at its best. Kevin being a grandson of the famous Junior Crehan, it's only natural that some of Junior's tunes would be included. In fact, there are more than a few, seventeen (or eighteen?) to be exact, making of this album a virtual tribute to the Clare musician who passed away not so long ago.
This review by Philippe Varlet was originally written for his Celtic Grooves Newsletter and appears here by kind permission of the author.
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