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Tuatha de Danann biography
Tuatha de Danann is a Brazillian band and comes from the city of Varginha in the state of Minas Gerais, an important historical region because of the fight against the Imperial domination for Brazil?s independence. The band was first named Pendragon, and they began their activities 1995 intending to create a different kind of music for their region by mixing heavy metal with Celtic and medieval sounds. An early demo tape titled ?The Last Pendragon? was released in 1996 to generally good reviews.

Afterward they changed the band name Tuatha de Danann to better reflect their musical style. The name comes from the Celtic mythology and translates to ?People of the Goddess Danu?.

All the band members participate in songwriting and arranging and they bring their respective influences to the music:

Metal: Giovanni Gomes and Edgar Brito point to LED ZEPPELIN, IRON MAIDEN, BLACK SABBATH and ANATHEMA as influences. The band uses both clean vocals and growling but tends to be closer to hard rock than modern metal.

Celtic: Vocals are sometimes sung in Gaelic and the band employs several Celtic instruments (Braia is an excellent flutist, too). This is their most dominant characteristic but echoes of JETHRO TULL are not too difficult to be identified.

Prog: Mainly thanks to Braia who claims influences from IAN ANDERSON, STEVE HACKETT and STEVE HOWE. Can be compared to JETHRO TULL, GENESIS and YES.

The band has not released any new studio material since 2004, but a DVD was issued in 2009. Braia released a solo work in 2007. The band is still officially active.

Bio by octopus-4

Tuatha de Danann official website

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TUATHA DE DANANN discography

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TUATHA DE DANANN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.00 | 3 ratings
Tuatha De Danann
3.00 | 7 ratings
3.89 | 8 ratings
The Delirium Has Just Began...
3.14 | 12 ratings
Trova Di Danu

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Showing last 10 reviews only
 Trova Di Danu by TUATHA DE DANANN album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.14 | 12 ratings

Trova Di Danu
Tuatha de Danann Prog Folk

Review by kenethlevine
Special Collaborator Prog-Folk Team

1 stars I am a staunch supporter of the "non traditional marriage" of celtic folk with rock music, even hard rock. Over the years, mostly British Isles bands have been the finest proponents of this blend - POGUES, RUNRIG, MEN THEY COULDN'T HANG, WATERBOYS, and OYSTERBAND all come to mind, as much for their political and human interest themes that transcended the usual drunken bar fight lyrics as for their considerable musicality. On the other hand relatively few bands convincingly melded metal to folk. The best of these I have heard is MAGO DE OZ from Spain, to whom TUATHA DE DANANN owes the greatest debt of gratitude. However based on this disk, I doubt that MAGO DE OZ is much flattered by the imitation.

For every poignant RUNRIG anthem there is a tepid WOLFSTONE regurgitation; for every James Joyce rivaling POGUES romp is a warmed over hand me down from TEMPEST. For every well sequenced and executed ballad or metal fest by MAGO DE OZ is a frenetic and soulless ballad or metal fest (both sound pretty much the same anyway) by TUATHA DE DANANN that conveys a failure to assimilate the virtues of the folk genre prior to alloying it. Most of this is a crass and hard to forgive exercise in amplifying and speeding up jigs or reels, or dressing a death growl in a kilt. Songs like "Bella Nature", "Lover of the Queen", "Land's Revenge" and "Arrival" are even worse than that and essentially torturous. Sometimes after a minute or so of tentative intro, they realize they have locked themselves in and the only way out is with a hammer and a groan. The exceptions would be the lighter "Land of Youth", the guttural but rousing "Believe it's True" and the atypical and more traditionally celtic title cut with female vocals. But the damage inflicted by the worst this group has to offer neutralizes these gains many times over.

Perhaps the band's inactivity since 2004 means that it has been offered as a sacrifice to Danu, the water goddess from which the it derives its name, and she has accepted selflessly for the benefit of bands like DANU and DE DANANN, not to mention listeners like me.

 Trova Di Danu by TUATHA DE DANANN album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.14 | 12 ratings

Trova Di Danu
Tuatha de Danann Prog Folk

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team

5 stars When an album is opened by a song like "Bella Natura" it can't be bad. Taking into account that the previous "The Delirium Has Just Begun" was an excellent album, making something even better was surely not easy.

I don't know the lyrics so I can't say why the track title and the chorus have those two Italian words (they mean "Nice Nature"), but the song is excellent. The fusion between metal and celtic is really a fusion, not just a mix or an alternance of the two genres. The folk and the metal instruments work well together and this is another huge different between this band and Epic Metal bands like the HEOL TELWEN just to mention one. The main instrument here is Braia's flute who plays a lot of fast notes and represents the connection, the contact point between the metal fastness and the celtic melody. I have seen on youtube a live performance of this song. They are incredibly funny on stage, too. Unfortunately the movie quality was very low.

What's next? "Lover Of The Queen" is a sort of Irish pub song but with a strong prog-metal influence. The melody can remind to the POGUES but the instrumental parts are very heavy and also the acoustic guitar interludes are closer to AYREON than to the CLANNAD. It's very different from the previous song because it's surely darker and I think more "prog", but it's another excellent one.

"Land Of Youth" starts like it was another pub song. Lighter than the previous has an unexpected middle part that is very similar to the acoustic YES, also because the singer has a very high-pitch not dissimilar from Jon ANDERSON or Chris SQUIRE. Another very good upbeat one.

"De Danaan's Voice" is a short interlude. This is totally celtic this time. Less than one minute of folk with a female vocalist. I don't know who she is but she may be the same who sings in the Braia solo album released in 2007. Short but nice.

After a folk song some prog metal: "The Land's Revenge" with clean vocals, acoustic guitar and metal instrumentation is the kind of melodic songs that metal bands are used to place one for each album. There's another good flute's performance but I suggest giving an ear to the bass. It doesn't do special things but what he does is very good. After a couple of minutes it changes to pure prog-metal, then acoustic again. At this point the facoustic guitar and the flute are reminding of Latimer-Collins of the CAMEL's middle period, then metal again. What a track...and we are not yet at the first half of the album.

Following there's "Spellboundance", that's what we can call a typical song of this band. Acoustic base (with strings, too), a very solar and "smiling" choir and the flute adding a touch of celtic.

"Believe It's True" is another very good song. Started by acoustic guitar, it's a very nice happy song.

On "The Arrival" the flute and also the melody are closer to JETHRO TULL or to CAMEL until the metal part. This can be compared to ARTENSION. There's growling and incredibly speed keyboard. Classical and arabic influences are mixed together. Metal fans this is your pot.

One minute and half of celtic instrumental music. "The Oghma's Reel" is another excellent song in the vein of the early MOSTLY AUTUMN.

Now the title track. The female singer of De Danann's voice is back again. This song is an excellent reason to classify the band into prog-folk. I don't want to describe it. I like the whole album but this track is special. Just listen to it.

Last "The Wheel" is a quite long track for the band's standards. Those who like the folk side of MOSTLY AUTUMN will surely like this closer even though the metal part has few to do with the Lake District's band.

It's really a pity that this excellent album has been the last released by the band. I'm undecided between 4 and five stars. I don't know if it can really be considered an essential masterpiece, but just excellent is not enough.

Let's break (a little) the rules and go for the maximum.

 The Delirium Has Just Began... by TUATHA DE DANANN album cover Studio Album, 2002
3.89 | 8 ratings

The Delirium Has Just Began...
Tuatha de Danann Prog Folk

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team

4 stars I have liked the TUATHA DE DANANN since my first approach but this album made me fall in love with their music. I can suggest starting from this album as "Brazuzan (Taller Than A Hill)" is a song that can immediatekly catch your attention. Hard and Heavy but with a very joyous flute riff it transmits energy and wish to dance even to me that I can dance not better than a potato in boiling water. It's light and easy but with many different moments including clean vocal choirs, distorted guitars, 12strings and fender piano as well as growling and distorted bass. This is the song that made me decide to suggest the band to PA. If you are curious about this band start from here.

The second track reminds to the first incarnation of the band and was probably written years before as "The Last Pendragon" was the band's name before turning into Tuatha De Danann (Should mean something like "the people of the Goddess Dana"). This is a prog- metal track that I can compare to Artension, specially for the excellent keyboard work. The celtic element, Braia's flute in this case, appears after about two minutes, but this is mainly a heavy song, except for the piano solo interlude.

"Abracadabra" is on the opposite side: starts with acoustic and 12 strings guitars supporting the flute. It remains mainly acoustic even though the obsessive drumming and the bass add a lot of energy. The melodic line is not too folky and is more like a Jethro Tull's song.

Even "The Last Words" starts acoustic and again there's a very good flute melody, more medieval than celtic. If it wasn't for the (good) low-pitched vocals I could think to Renaissance. This could be one of the song which has convinced the prog folk team to get them onboard.

"The Wanderings of Oisin" is a poem by William Butler Yeats. By coincidence I have recently reviewed an album of Angelo Branduardi that's totally inspired to Yeats (Branduardi Canta Yates), and Branduardi is the artist more close to Blackmore's Night that you can imagine. Probably it's Blackmore's Night that are close to Branduardi. Ok, let's get back in track.

The longest track closes the album. It's nice spotting that even this full length album, as the previous one, is shorter than the band's debut EP. This track starts "dark Celtic" but is full of prog elements. Try and see. Structured like an epic, with different sections but with smooth transitions so that it flows like a continuum. Years ago I fell in love with Marillion because of Grendel. Today I can say that this song is technically better. More original (less Supper's ready, I mean), better played and arranged also because apparently this band is more technically skilled than Rothary & co, even though listening to what Trewavas does with Transatlantic it's more likely that Marillion were easy by choice and not because of technical limitations. In some parts I also hear the influence of YES, and in particular of Anderson/Howe, let's say at around minute 7, before it becomes heavy again with a metal part with growling, screaming and heavy drums. It's like having Marillion, Yes and Arcturus in the same song.

Some blank seconds and there's a sort of ghost track, that's simply a reprise of Brazuzan with the band joking by playing the main theme with a choir backed by acoustic guitar, and the flute part sung by the growler is amazingly funny.

This is really a great album. I don't say that it's in my top 10 but I always listen to it with a lot of pleasure. Strongly suggested.

 Tingaralatingadun by TUATHA DE DANANN album cover Studio Album, 2001
3.00 | 7 ratings

Tuatha de Danann Prog Folk

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team

3 stars This second album of Tuatha De Danann is officially their first full legth CD. It's quite strange as the first was considered an EP and this one is three minutes shorter.

However this is not much different from the debut. This, too, is full of the unusual fusion of Celtic, Metal and Prog but this time the prog element is more relevant at least on a couple of songs.

The album is opened by "The Dance Of The Little Ones". A flute driven folk tune backed by a noisy keyboard turns into heavy rock with drums and guitar but the main theme remains almost celtic. The vocals include a choir which features both clean and growl. The good of this track is that the passages between celtic and metal are so slight that you are transported from one genre to another without realising how. This is a perfect fusion. Add to that the captivating melody.

The bass opens "Battle Song". I don't hesitate in calling it progressive metal with a bit of celtic. I mean that many tracks on Ayreon's The Human Equation have a very similar feeling. This is my favorite song of the album. A good one to start with this band.

Even the following one is a song of the kind that can remain impressed in your memory. Thanks mainly to the flute's work, but the whole song is excellent. Having the flute backed by distorted guitar and heavy drums or by Bodhran and acoustic guitar seems to make no difference. "Behold the Horned King" seems a bit "Satanic" as title but it's just about a celtic legend instead, the one about the Welsh hero Hu Gaddarn (somebody thinks he's the druidic transposition of the story of Jesus Gaddarn=the mighty).

"Tan Pinga Ra Tan" is another great song. This sentence shows what it's about : "Here in the woods the elves dance and sing" Another powerful metal song with clean vocals, choir and celtic melody. Imagine it sung by Heather Findlay and played by Arjen Lucassen.

"Finganfor" may be an ogre or a friendly troll. He's somebody living on a hill. The song doesn't say much more. Musically speaking is excellent passing from a Clannad/Mostly Autumn feeling to just good metal.

The celt hero "Vergingetorix" is celebrated by a more metal oriented song. Probably the hardest and darkest of the album even when it calms down leaving room to acoustic guitar, keyboards and vocals.

"Celtia" is a short instrumental made mainly of 12strings guitar and flute. Totally acoustic and highly energetic.

"Some Tunes To Fly" is the longest track, the most "progressive" in terms of structure but also the weaker in my opinion. I thin the band has attempted something a bit too pretentious. Like YES meeting Dream Theather. They didn't fail, but the outcome is not at the level of the other songs of this album.

Then comes the title track. It's funny and also one of those on which they were used to joke a lot during the live exhibitions. Just two minutes of fun.

Finally a short coda made of acoustic guitar played like a classical. "MacDara" is probably inspired to Steve Hackett who Braia admits being one of his influencers. Very good for closing a very good album.

Just 3 stars, but I'm rounding the rating down. This album deserves to be listened.

 Tuatha De Danann by TUATHA DE DANANN album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.00 | 3 ratings

Tuatha De Danann
Tuatha de Danann Prog Folk

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team

3 stars This Brasilian band took a long time to be added to this site. The reason was the fact that their fusion between Metal and Celtic elements caused them to be considered like most of the Epic-Metal bands like HEOL TELWEN or AES DANA, while they surely have prog roots mainly brought into the band by the frontman Braia.

This debut album contains pure celtic songs as well as epic metal things, but each of them contains prog elements and more than one song on this album has a medieval flavor more than celtic, of the kind that is usual from artists like BLACKMORE'S NIGHT or ANGELO BRANDUARDI.

"US" is a celtic song, well played and arranged and is a good start but the things change immediately with the excellent "Tuatha De Danann", a song that contains all the elements mentioned before including the growling condensed in 6 minutes. If you like this song you can buy all of them. This is not their masterpiece but is made of the same ingredients of their best things: sudden changes in signature, passages from keyboards and tapped guitar to acoustic and flute, clean vocals and growling.

"Beltane" (The month of May in Gaelic) is a metal track that has a lot of DEEP PURPLE. Probably because of the folk element that adds a "classical" touch. Listening to the chords sequence this appears to be a canon. Of course IAN GILLAN never growled. This track really deserves some attention.

"The Bards Of Infinity" is one of the songs, I think, that convinced the prog folk team to add them. It's also this a heavy metal song played on a folk melody on which the wooden flute leads. The good with this band is that they are not absurdly dark as other bands considered "similar". Their music gives positive energy, this is the difference between them and the Epic Metallists.

Even when the subject is evily dark like in "The Queen Of the Witches" the song is not so dark. The opening is medieval and when the bass introduces the growling it's just for few seconds and the growl is used like a percussive instrument. The prevalent mood is the medieval one while the metal parts add energy, specially the very good guitar and keyboard solos reminding to the ARTENSION of VITALIJ KUPRIJ.

A song entitled "Faeryage" couldn't be different. Be happy. This music is solar and full of energy. Here the classical background of the guitarist is evident. I think there's also a bit of Wakeman's Myths and Legends inside. Frequently changes in signature in the second half of the song give it a strong prog flavor.

"Oisin" was a legendary Irish poet. Likely only a legend. The song which brings his name as title is opened by classical guitar and flute and turns into progressive metal. I can't call it differently. Fans of DREAM THEATER, give it a try.

"Inrahma" is an excellent closer. Almost totally acoustic and unplugged with Bodhran replacing drums is the darker song of the album. Bass pitched vocals, flute and acoustic guitar set up a mood good for a dark fantasy tale.

I'm rounding down the rate to three stars only because there's a couple of albums of this band which clearly deserve more but unfortunately none of them is an essential masterpiece, but all the production of this band has the characteristic of being energetic.

Strongly suggested.

Thanks to octopus-4 for the artist addition. and to ClemofNazareth for the last updates

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