Tradish - Beyond the Borders
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Beyond the Borders
GO Danish Folk Musik (

This modest record by a trio sounds best when adapting traditional Irish and Scottish tunes. It covers selections from across the diaspora: Solas, Flook, the Child ballads, fiddlers John Canty, Michael Coleman and Paddy Killoran, flutist Michael McGoldrick, pipers Leo Rowsome and Willie Clancy, sean-n inger Paddy Tunney. It also mixes Austrian waltzes, Bulgarian gypsy wedding tunes, and Danish adaptations of Irish music.

This array conveys the bands mission to expand the living tradition beyond the Celtic fringe; its members played with Moving Cloud as well as in the Danish folk scene. The inclusion of The Blacksmith evokes a soft rendition of this medieval English standard, with Louise Ring Vangsgaards vocals and fiddle blending smoothly. John Pilkingtons more mid-Atlantic accented voice does not dominate his guitar and bouzoki. This conveys the ambiance of an intimate session, but on record more projection in the production would have accented his presence better; his vocals on his self-penned, more mainstream folk songs underwhelm by comparison to the traditional selections which assert themselves more by merging his vocals into a more intriguing musical accompaniment beyond the singer-songwriter mode.

Percussionist Brian Woetmanns song Gypsy serves as a lighthearted, if lightweight, pub tune. Overall, the promise of this recording lies in its instrumentation and concentration on the Celtic and European repertoire more than the original tunes, which fade by comparison. If Tradish directs its energies to more energetic selections that draw from their well-chosen predecessors and peers, their next recording may better play to the promise shown in the Irish-centered songs that work better here. - John L. Murphy

Listen to a bit of "Richard Dwyer's" The band's web site:

CD available from cdRoots

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CD available from cdRoots

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