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The Morrigan - Wreckers CD (album) cover


The Morrigan


Prog Folk

3.29 | 7 ratings

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3 stars THE MORRIGAN, spurred by Colin Masson's aggressive guitars, Cathy Alexander's versatile vocals, and a sturdy rhythm section and keyboards owing more to rock than folk, continue to tackle mostly traditional tunes on "Wreckers", while also taking on much more contemporary material.

Successes can be found in both realms - the title cut is fresh and provocative and demands multiple listens; "Yarrow" is based on a profoundly simple up and back melody and engages with crisp acoustic guitar backing from the outset; "Cold Haily Windy Night" is a sultry fast paced seafaring tale with a playful backing, irresistible picking by Masson and spirited woodwinds; and "When the Rain Comes Down" is a much more modern reggae inflected song reminiscent of SALLY OLDFIELD in the vocals and late 1970s CAMEL or even KERRS PINK in the slick but moving synth passages. However, a few of the trad pieces are simply bores whatever the value of the story - "Banks of Green Willow" seems like an interminable recitation, while "Cold Blows the Wind" is based on a tune that almost every Celtic music fan has heard too much of and it's one of the less memorable renditions at that. "Wheels Turning" completely eschews the trademark sound and is almost rockabilly in parts, and earns a few points for verve but little else. It sounds exactly like somebody but I can't figure out whom! The instrumentals which open and close the album could be from almost any Celtic band of their time.

While this follow up to "Rides Out" doesn't wreck the band's reputation, it certainly doesn't propel them forward like one would have hoped. However, the presence of several superb cuts earns "Wreckers" the right to 3 stars and a return appearance or two.

kenethlevine | 3/5 |


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