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Tir Na Nog - Ricochet CD (album) cover


Tir Na Nog


Prog Folk

4.05 | 2 ratings

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4 stars Irish band TIR NA NOG is a unit lead by the duo Sonny Condell and Leo O'Kelly who had their heyday back in the early 1970's. Following a lengthy hiatus they started making occasional returns to release live material or perform live from the mid 1980's. Fast forward a few decades and Tir Na Nog also started to release new material. Initially a single was released through UK niche label Fruits de Mer Records in 2014, and in 2015 a second single appeared on that label as well. In addition they self-released a new album, "The Dark Dance". The main track of this single, Ricochet, is one of the songs from that production, backed by a live version of their old classic song Tir Na Nog.

Ricochet comes across as quite the compelling composition, and not at all one you would expect from the minds of two guys that are looking retirement age in the eye. This is a menacing, brooding affair, passionate and fiery as well, revolving around a dual set of acoustic guitars, with plucked solo sequences, energetic percussion backing and a haunting, almost drone-like violin as backing instrument, and fairly intense vocals giving the song and the lyrics an ominous sheen. Clearly folk and folk-based music, most certainly with an Irish tinge, but about as far removed from anything you'd normally associate with Ireland and Irish folk music in terms of mood and atmosphere.

The live rendition of Tir Na Nog on the B side of this 7 inch vinyl production isn't quite as haunting, but also this one has a mystical, almost otherworldly mood by way of a dark instrument presence of some kind, with occasional percussion details supplementing the plucked, echoing and more distinctly psychedelic tinged folk inspired music. More relaxed in nature though, without the ominous intensity that makes the title track of this single such a convincing affair. A strong track, but lacking those passionate details of the haunting, ominous mood of the A side track.

If you need an introduction to the charms of Tir Na Nog, this single comes across as an excellent choice. One truly strong track from their new album, backed by a live version of one of their classics. Otherwise this is a production that in general should be of interest to those with an affection for a band that blend psychedelic and progressive rock details into a folk music context, arguably with a stronger emphasis on the psychedelic than the progressive aspects, although to what extent is very much a subject open to debate.

Windhawk | 4/5 |


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