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Private Label BRE002CD

Breabach’s previous two releases have seen them catapulted amongst the great bands, not only in Scotland, but across the world.  This, their third album, cements that reputation even further – it seems they can do no wrong!

There have been some changes in line-up since their last CD, but these do nothing to diminish the great Breabach sound which is so distinctive and compelling.  With twin pipes, fiddle, whistles, flute, bouzouki, several vocalists, and a bass / guitar combo to die for, this album is everything you would expect from a band in their prime such as this.

There is a mix of trad and composed material here, and a nice balance of tunes and songs.  All are arranged in typical Breabach style – with a traditional yet modern feel, and plenty of twists and turns to keep the listener’s ear at full attention.  Highlights are numerous.  Scotland’s Winter is a song based on an Edwin Muir poem, Scotland 1941, with an anthemic chorus, which is followed by a haunting piobaireachd to good effect.  The band drop down a gear or two to give us Farley Bridge, a delightful Duncan Chisholm tune where the melody interweaves between the different instruments beautifully, ending with the big pipes and bowed bass which give it a real stately feel.  M’eudail, M’eudail, a Gaelic praise song, is delicately sung by Megan Henderson, with beautiful accompaniment based around a simple but extremely effective guitar and bass – a perfect complement to the faster tunes and a lovely end to the album.

This recording is one of the best I have heard in a long, long time, and it will be a while before anything replaces it in my car stereo!  Don’t miss it.

Fiona Heywood 

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This album was reviewed in Issue 91 of The Living Tradition magazine.