Skip­per’s Al­ley

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - MUSIC REVIEWS - Claddagh Records SIOB­HÁN LONG

Skip­per’s Al­ley are a new band min­ing the tra­di­tion for the best and the most in­trigu­ing ma­te­rial, and mint­ing their own tunes in the spa­ces in be­tween. And space is what de­fines this very im­pres­sive de­but. Thought­ful, re­strained ar­range­ments seek out tunes and songs from the Good­man col­lec­tion, the Child bal­lad col­lec­tion and be­yond, where they loll peace­ably side by side with con­tem­po­rary com­po­si­tions. Eoghan Ó Ceannab­háin’s pair of tunes, Muire­ann’s, cast a dis­ci­plined eye over de­li­ciously jagged-edged con­ver­sa­tions be­tween pipes and flute in par­tic­u­lar. But it’s the breadth of in­flu­ences, worn lightly (with a doff­ing of their caps to Máirtín O’Con­nor in their choice of the great com­poser’s opener, Rockin’

The Boat), and the re­mark­able vo­cals from Ó Ceannab­háin and John Flynn that shim­mer; a glo­ri­ously three-di­men­sional de­but.

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