EMMA SWEENEY Pangea Sweeney Records

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - MUSICREVIEWS - SIOB­HÁN LONG

New in­fu­sions are the lifeblood of tra­di­tional mu­sic: ev­i­dence of its beat­ing heart. On Pangea, for­mi­da­ble Manch­ester fid­dler Emma Sweeney breathes life into an in­ven­tive col­lec­tion of old tunes, can­nily mar­ry­ing them with one ear cocked for the quirks and foibles that set each one apart. Sweeney has a neat line in sub­tle tune com­po­si­tions, char­ac­terised by a re­straint that fits hand in glove with the al­bum’s re­flec­tive mood. Men­tor and pro­ducer Mike McGoldrick com­ple­ments Sweeney’s widean­gle lens with un­ob­tru­sive ar­range­ments, where a high­oc­tane cast (in­clud­ing Don­ald Shaw and Manus Lunny) play with ease. Sweeney’s in­clu­sion of Nick Drake’s A Place to Be is an un­ex­pected de­light, an­chor­ing her col­lec­tion in a place where she is in full con­trol, grounded yet fre­quently free to take flight. A highly im­pres­sive de­but. em­masweeney­mu­sic. com

Down­load: A Place to Be

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