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Gavin O'Loghlen & Cotters Bequest - In The Home Of My Ancestors CD (album) cover


Gavin O'Loghlen & Cotters Bequest


Prog Folk

3.00 | 3 ratings

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Prog-Folk Team
3 stars An impressive debut by this Celtic rock outfit, "Home of My Ancestors" is inspired by Gavin O'Loghlen's research into his family background. In 1854 his paternal great great grandfather left County Clare, Ireland for Port Adelaide, South Australia, spurred like so many by the potato famine of the 1840s. A similar journey was followed by his maternal great great grandfather not long after. Let's just say the music of his ancestral home fairly simmers in his blood, such that it's hard to believe Gavin doesn't hail from the emerald Isle himself.

Herein is a mixture of the ethereal and the earthy, the reel and the ballad, the brocaded and the straightforward, all of it united by a BIG sound befitting 10 performers, and a crystalline production. Pipes, fiddle, accordion, whistles, acoustic guitar, steady rock drumming, and even keyboards support the glistening melodies and the vocals of Angelee Theodoros among others including nO'Loghlen himself. After a slow start, which would become standard in future recordings, the miraculous "Carraig Chaisel" offers more than a hint of the band's wherewithal, morphing from a virtual hymn to a neo classical piece worthy of MIKE OLDFIELD, or perhaps a Celtic SAGRADO CORACAO DA TERRA might be even more a propos. The uptempo pace is maintained through the bouncy instrumental "Cloghans" and the tongue in cheek political history lesson of "The Two Donkeys of Slaibhe Elbha". Other highlights are "Ballinskelligs Bay" and "And the Donkeys Inherit the Earth", confirming the band's comfort with song and piece equally.

Unfortunately, the musical aspect seems to take second stage to the narrative for the last 4 or 5 tracks, those with a year after their names. They might have been better constructed as liner notes for the most part, the exception being "Winter 1847", which points to further more progressive directions with its multiple themes and its reflective and succinct piano work.

Gavin O'Loghlen seems to have wholeheartedly adopted his musical heritage whether through nature or nurture, but anyone can find a home here if open to a sound bigger than folk and more rootsy than prog.

kenethlevine | 3/5 |


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