Link to Living Tradition Homepage





EOIN DILLON - Pondelorum 

EOIN DILLON - Pondelorum 
Private Label EDCD001

A work of genius, or madness, or possibly both, Pondelorum is the third solo album from piper Eoin Dillon, formerly with Dublin musical pioneers Kila, joined here by a cast of thousands - or at least dozens - of guest musicians. Although there are copious notes with this CD, they tell us little about the music, instead being filled with poems, anecdotes, exhortations and depositions. I'm assuming that Dillon wrote everything not otherwise ascribed, both music and text. This enigmatic character does tell us a little about himself here, if he's to be trusted: born in Dublin in 1971, to the bells of Christchurch (I bet his mother was thrilled), drifting off the beaten track soon enough, and these days freewheeling with no brakes and little sense of direction, but things don't seem to be going too badly if this recording is any indication.

Eoin Dillon's piping is tighter, sharper, at times more urgent than on his previous albums. The opening Dancing On The Radio is a lovely lyrical piece, showing great control under Eoin's wild open technique, while Flor Begley The Piper From Crossbarry pushes on at a gallop, heedless of obstacles. The clever Christchurch Bells combines a pulsing reel with those portentous peals. Uisce Faoi Thalamh resembles the classic 17th century airs of aristocratic Ireland, with their songs of faery and fey spirits, beautifully played on pipes and harpsichord. Dillon finishes with a slow piece, more jazz than trad, drums and trombone evoking Soho rather than Smithfield. There are some imperfections here, more on the whistle than the pipes, but this is an outstanding album and a rare treat for anyone with an interest in the future of Irish music. I should point out that the track names on the sleeve are quite different from those in the notes, so don't trust your eyes on Pondelorum. Rely on your ears.

Alex Monaghan

Secure On-line mailorder service
Buy this CD online from The Listening Post
The Listening Post is the CD mailorder service of The Living Tradition magazine.
This album was reviewed in Issue 116 of The Living Tradition magazine.