Glasgow based but with strong connections to Donegal, sisters Anna, Sheila and Clare Friel pack more artistic punch than the Kilfenora and Tulla Céilí bands combined on their debut recording. Their versatility on a range of instruments including uilleann pipes, flute, whistle and mouth organ adds depth to the recording. They take each set with a determined and focused intent, biting into the tracks with an expressive authority. Each set has its own identity. The opening tracks include various combinations of pipes, flute and fiddle. On tracks like the Humours of Ballyloughlin, they bring a steely edge of power and passion to the arrangement. Jenny's Welcome to Charlie is a powerful rendition of this well known reel performed on solo fiddle.

To provide a counterbalance they give a flute duet on The Noone Lasses/Big John's Reel/Kitty the Hare and a whistle and mouth organ arrangement on the jigs Contentment Is Wealth/ Liam Ó Connors/Winnie Hayes'. Their vocal harmonies are equally impressive with some lush unaccompanied songs like Tir Chanaill and The Blue Hills of Antrim providing moments of respite on this 15 track release. This album is a triumph of natural raw talent delivered with passion and confidence by three sublimely gifted musicians. The track variety, arrangements and general air of fun that emanates from the grooves make it all the more enjoyable. Gearoid Ó Maonaigh and Griogair Labhruidh on guitar, and Seamus Ó Kane on bodhrán provide the accompaniment. An early highlight to 2014 and a definite repeat play album.


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Comment by Ray Sloan on January 31, 2014 at 9:49

If you haven't got the Girls' album yet then yer missing a treat !

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