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Dawros Music  DM003

On their third album, fiddlers Liz and Yvonne Kane have produced another great selection of East Galway tunes including several of Liz's compositions, and only three from their muse Paddy Fahey (unless he's changed his approach to tune names). Instead, there's more from Paddy O'Brien, Ed Reavy and other late great Irish composers. The CD title comes from one of Liz's tunes, written in celebration of her long musical partnership with Yvonne - after all, the girls are well into their twenties now! It's a charming reel, with that weaving unpredictability of East Galway music, followed by Paddy O'Brien's Smiling Lady and a reel new to me: The Céilíer.

But I've started at the end, so we'll work backwards. There are two slow tracks on this recording; one combining the song airs Tipperary So Far Away and Pretty Girl Milking Her Cow: they make fine waltzes on twin fiddles. O'Rahilly's Grave is a well-known air, and a perfect example of the tight duet playing for which Liz and Yvonne are justly famous. In between are a couple of sets of jigs, one of Paddy Fahey's in each, which I recently heard when the girls performed with the brilliant Edel Fox in Camden: here they are taken at a slightly slower pace, and even without the extra drive of Edel's concertina this is lovely music. Dancer Nathan Platzke (from Ottawa, not one of the Galway Platzkes) twinkles his toes to Paddy Fahey's Jig, and to a previous pair of hornpipes.

The two fiddlers are also joined by Dáithí Sproule on guitar, Mick Conneely on bouzouki, and Patsy Broderick on piano at various points. There isn't such a preponderance of reels as some albums, but enough to please most listeners: Farewell to Eyrecourt and The Stone in the Field are relatively well known, The 13 Arches and Eileen O'Brien's less so, and of course there's another of Paddy Fahey's here. The opening track is very well chosen, with the ever-popular Sean sa Cheo following Finbarr Dwyer's Star of Ireland, preceded by Ed Reavy's classic Starry Lane to Monaghan: timeless perfection. The Kane sisters' notes on each tune are full and informative. Even more details on Liz, Yvonne, and all three of their recordings are available at - with a link to Claddagh Records for sample tracks.

Alex Monaghan

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This album was reviewed in Issue 87 of The Living Tradition magazine.