Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Pererin - Haul Ar Yr Eira CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

4.04 | 24 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Special Collaborator
Prog Folk Researcher
5 stars Just about everyone who’s ever written a review of this album has given it the highest rating possible for whatever site or magazine they were writing for at the time. I’ve held off putting together my own review for quite a while simply because I didn’t want to be the lone wet blanket with a dissenting opinion. But everything turned out for the best because in that time I’ve come to appreciate this record in a way that I didn’t expect to after the first several times I played it.

Part of the reason is that I’ve spent an awful lot of time over the past year or so really concentrating on progressive folk music in my listening habits, at times almost exclusively it seems. And of the couple hundred albums, singles, samples and demos it has been my pleasure to enjoy in that time, this one ranks among the finest. Not that one’s opinion of an album or a band ought to necessarily be based on comparisons to others, but in the case of this album many of the things that have endeared other bands to me are also present here.

One band that immediately comes to mind when listening to this album is the loosely-coupled Irish collective known as Loudest Whisper. Not that the two bands sound much alike, although I suppose they do a bit. But more importantly, both bands have a knack for taking traditional arrangements and instrumentation and using them to craft beautiful songs that are very relevant in today’s progressive folk environment. The Swedish group Kebnekaise shows some of these same qualities.

Another positive trait is the band’s insistence on singing in their native Welsh tongue. Normally it puts me off a bit when bands sing in their native language, not because I’m xenophobic or anything, but because I’m one of those sort of fans who is as interested in the lyrics as in the music (if not more so). But on this album that isn’t a problem, mostly because the traditional folk themes are fairly obvious even if the subtle nuances of the individual tales is lost on me.

One more thing to point out – the band uses congas, bongos and a Celtic bodhrán for percussion instead of more sterile snare drums or (*egad*) digital drums. That would be unforgivable on an album like this anyway, and the hand drums supplement the earthy and intimate feel of the music in a way that really enhances the experience of listening to it.

And back to the vocals; Nest Llwelyn has an angelic voice that was simply made for folk music, no doubt about it. Her high-pitched lilting on tracks like “Gloyn Byw”, “Can Y Melinydd” and “Titrwm Tetrwm” give these songs a range that lifts them above the ranks of simply good to heights of excellence. This woman has a voice that should be used on as many folk-leaning albums as possible, and it’s a shame she doesn’t appear on more of them. Charli Goodall has a decent folk voice as well, not much on range but a timbre that is comfortable and well-suited to this style of music. Latino folk music fans will recognize the same easy gait to his singing as is heard in so many stellar Hispanic folk bands like Los Jaivas, Congreso, Contraluz and the Uruguayan singer Armando Tirelli.

The band doesn’t play it straight folk completely though. There are spots of mellotron and even electric guitar on tracks like “Can y Melinydd” and “Pan Ddaw Y Brenin Yn Ol”, and they show an ability to shift seamlessly from languid acoustic folk to an upbeat electric tempo on tracks like “Haul Ar Yr Eira”. On the other hand acoustic instrumentals like “Hiraeth Y Mor” are every bit as endearing as the other stuff. It’s all good.

There isn’t a bad song here, and pretty much all of them are uniformly beautiful and very easy on the ears. This is the kind of stuff many progressive folk fans seek out tirelessly, and unfortunately find far too infrequently. I’m glad I waited such a long time to write out my thoughts on this album; otherwise I’m afraid it would not have been given its due. It’s not often I plant the full five stars on an album these days, an unfortunate byproduct of having listened to too much music and perhaps becoming a bit jaded in the process. But this one deserves that mark, and I’m honored to be able to give it. Very highly recommended to all progressive folk fans and lots of other people too. This one is worth seeking out to add to your collection.


ClemofNazareth | 5/5 |


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Share this PERERIN review

Social review comments () BETA

Review related links

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.