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Private Label BMMCC001 

This is full of Mulholland drive, lift, shove and huff. From the outset, it is an absolute tour de force. When I was a young fluter many moons ago, my flute heroes were Packie Duignan, Matt Molloy, Cathal McConnell and Seamus Tansey among others. Brendan Mulholland’s playing here rolls the best of all these together and more. He has delicious tone, ornamentation and tempo throughout. I also love the accompaniment from Micky on guitar, which adds a real sense of pace and rhythm. Micky comes from a different musical tradition, but I like what he adds to Brendan’s flute playing.

Here we have a lovely selection of tunes; from old standards played with real feeling to more modern tunes including compositions by Brendan and Micky. The rendition of Sonny Brogan’s, Paddy Fahy’s and one of their own, Feilimi’s Misfortune, contrasts with the unusual rhythms (almost 7/8) of Lena’s / Winter Chill / Summer Breeze / The Stretchy Jean’s. It’s also lovely to hear Headwood Crossing, penned by another great Antrim fluter and piper, Paddy Davey.

One of my favourite sets is The Broken Pledge, Splendid Isolation (from Brendan McGlinchey) and Black Pat’s (from Tommy Peoples). I loved the slippery slurs, tidy triplets, canny crans and the lift that Brendan gets into the set.

Stephane Morvan and Geert Lejeune must be delighted to hear their instruments showcased by this master musician. This is definitely a recording for the collection of any flute lover.

Brendan Carson


This review appeared in Issue 133 of The Living Tradition magazine