Folk

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Music Reviews - Tony Hillier

Far from the Trees TEYR Trans­global Com­prised of an Ir­ish­man, a Welsh­man and an English­man of Cor­nish her­itage com­bin­ing pipes, whis­tles, ac­cor­dion, fid­dle, gui­tar and voices ev­ery which way but loose, TEYR of­fers a cor­nu­copia of Celtic-rooted de­lights. With the trio latch­ing on to bands as laud­able as Lu­nasa and Lau for in­spi­ra­tion, their mu­sic also has the merit of be­ing imag­i­na­tively ar­ranged. Bothy bal­lads and other songs are jux­ta­posed with jigs, reels and airs in an aus­pi­cious de­but al­bum that blends orig­i­nal­ity with tra­di­tion. TEYR’s var­i­ous in­flu­ences and vir­tu­os­ity, honed by two years’ gig­ging, come to­gether with co­her­ence and con­ti­nu­ity in Far from the Trees un­der the un­der­stated pro­duc­tion val­ues of Gerry Diver (Sam Lee, Lisa Knapp). In­stru­men­tals dis­play­ing in­tri­cate in­ter­play be­tween Do­minic Hen­der­son (on wind in­stru­ments), Tom­mie Black-Roff (ac­cor­dion) and James Gavin (on strings) book­end the set. The open­ing med­ley, Reeds & Fip­ple, peaks in a lu­mi­nous uil­lean pipes and ac­cor­dion duel, un­der­pinned by rhythm gui­tar. Af­ter a stately as­cend­ing in­tro, the clos­ing Dean’s Banjo breaks out into a free-for-all, with the same three in­stru­ments in uni­son and harmony. In The Badge, in­ven­tive gui­tar play­ing stokes while whis­tle and ac­cor­dion joust joy­ously. The most mem­o­rable song, False Lady, is ren­dered at a quicker tempo than most mur­der bal­lads. WB Yeats’s haunt­ing poem Host­ing of the Sidhe and the Scot­tish trav­eller bal­lad Hunt­ley Town are de­liv­ered with ap­pro­pri­ate so­bri­ety. TEYR (three in the Cor­nish lan­guage) is cer­tainly a name to con­jure with.

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