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Clannad Anam album cover
2.66 | 14 ratings | 3 reviews | 7% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1990

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Rí Na Cruinne (3:04)
2. Anam (4:00)
3. In Fortune's Hand (3:52)
4. The Poison Glen (3:51)
5. Wilderness (Instrumental) (2:04)
6. Why Worry? (4:25)
7. Úirchill An Chreagáin (4:18)
8. Love And Affection (4:54)
9. You're The One (3:52)
10. Dobhar (Instrumental) (2:42)

Total Time 37:02

Bonus tracks on 1992 US release:
2. In A Lifetime - feat. Bono (2:08)
7. Harry's Game (2:30)

Bonus track on 2004 remaster:
11. Rí Na Cruinne (Lazyboy mix) (4:49)

Line-up / Musicians

- Máire Brennan / vocals, harp
- Noel Duggan / guitar
- Pádraig Duggan / mandola, acoustic guitar, harmonica
- Ciarán Brennan / double & electric basses, guitar, piano, synth, vocals, arranger & producer

- Brídín Brennan / harmony vocals
- Anton Drennan / electric guitar, dobro
- Ian Parker / keyboards
- Paul Ridout / programming
- Mel Collins / saxophones
- Vinnie Kilduff / bansuri
- Paul Moran / drums, percussion
- Bono / vocal duet (bonus #2)

Releases information

Artwork: Carol Diver, Dee Brennan & Tim Jarvis

LP RCA ‎- PL 74762 (1990, Europe)

CD Tara ‎- TARA CD 3025 (1990, Ireland)
CD Atlantic ‎- 82409-2 (1992, US) With 2 bonus tracks, new cover
CD RCA ‎- 82876 584542 (2004, Europe) Remaster by Richard Dowling w/ a bonus track, new cover art

Thanks to kenethlevine for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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CLANNAD Anam ratings distribution

(14 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(7%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(21%)
Good, but non-essential (29%)
Collectors/fans only (43%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

CLANNAD Anam reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by kenethlevine
2 stars After the atypical "Sirius" set disappointed earlier support, CLANNAD undertook a world tour while returning to soundtrack work for "Atlantic Realm" and "The Angel and the Soldier Boy". They also filled the gap with a well received compilation "Pastpresent" and an accompanying video with interviews and excerpts of the band on record, on video, in rehearsal and on stage. Before returning to the studio to record "Anam", Pol Brennan left the band for solo work, the first departure of an original member. Given that he appeared to be the force beyond the band's move towards rock, it is not surprising that "Anam" is much mellower than what came before. What is surprising is that this doesn't just border on soporific, but embraces the new age as if the band believed that sister ENYA's success had more to do with the invasion of record shops by sleepwalkers than any level of conscious movement.

Of the 10 tracks, a staggering 6 barely have a pulse, as pretty as they may be. Two are even instrumental, a rarity for the band. In the sole rocker, "In Fortune's Hand", the voices do not rise above a loud whisper, and it's left to MEL COLLINS' sax to muster a modicum of raunchiness. He delivers another dandy performance in "Why Worry", which actually sounds like a very subdued CAMEL or more accurately a good PETE BARDENS solo track, cheesy in an irresistible way. The only track that hearkens back to the melodic sensibility of "Macalla" is the magnificent ballad "The Poison Glen", which is one of their most fully realized ecologically themed efforts. "Love and Affection" is another appealing if minimally challenging piece.

For the rest, it would depend on whether beautiful is enough for you; if you enjoy delicate amorphous tunes based more on repetition or trance induction than dramatic flair and emotive intensity, by all means seek this out. From my perspective, "Anam" marked the beginning of the end for CLANNAD as a dynamic recording group even as it kicked off their career as world music masters. It has soul yes, but one so fragile that it seems only fit for eternal rest.

Review by TCat
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars With Anam, released in 1990, Clannad continues to release albums with their mix of Celtic folk and Celtic pop. Sometimes it works well and sometimes it doesn't. This album has a few highlights, but the best ones are the tracks that were added on for the 1992 US release. This was at a time when the family band was enjoying increasing popularity in the states, what with Celtic and new age music being quite popular. That is why the tracks "In a Lifetime" and "Harry's Game" were added onto this album in the US. "In a Lifetime" featured guest vocalist Bono from U2 and "Harry's Game" was used on a popular Volkswagen commercial. Yes these were excellent songs, but they were not found on the original album. However, among the sleepy, softer songs of this album, there were a few gems.

"Ri Na Cruinne" is a nice opener sung in their traditional language even though it was written by the band. This was followed by "In a Lifetime" on the US version. "Anam" however, is a softer song and immediately loses the energy from the previous song. Even though it is English, it is hard to find anything interesting about it. "In Fortune's Hand" goes for the more pop sound and even adds a saxophone part performed by Mel Collins, originally from King Crimson, but the sax sounds totally out of place on this track and makes the song sound cheesy. "The Poison Glen" takes a slight turn for the better, but is mostly unmemorable.

"Wilderness" is a lovely acoustic guitar solo with a few synth treatments, but it's short. The popular "Harry's Game" is added on the US version at this point, and continues with the sudden turn for the better. The harmonies in this non-English song are very beautiful and relaxing. "Why Worry" features Collins again on the sax, but it feels more natural in this song, so it's decent. "Úirchill An Chreagáin" is Celtic traditional folk, and it's only vocal and acoustic solo. Many times I feel Clannad is better at staying with the folk sound than with their attempts at pop, but this is not the case with this track. For listeners of Clannad's music, it's starting to feel a bit tired and worn out. At this point, a few more traditional instruments would have made it more fresh and interesting.

The next two tracks continue in the pop vein, but are mostly just mediocre and "Dobhar" is a soft instrumental which isn't too bad, but mostly unremarkable. It's like on this album, things were just getting too formulaic for the band. Except for a few tracks and a couple of add ons for the US release, this is just a tired album. If you are a fan, you will love it, but Clannad had better albums than this one, so typical listeners won't really find much to hold their interest here.

Latest members reviews

5 stars A farewell to Clannad. In spite of the absence of Pol (one of the two main generators of musical ideas in the band), Anam is a genuine Clannad album. Moreover, it's a Clannad album with partial return to the band's canon, with a couple of tracks sung in Gaelic and one traditional song (their pre ... (read more)

Report this review (#1954072) | Posted by proghaven | Wednesday, August 1, 2018 | Review Permanlink

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