Link to Living Tradition Homepage





Sleeve not available
LEWS CASTLE COLLEGE "Breaking the Ground (Anniversary Commemorative CD)" LCC01CD

"A good listen for anyone with an ear for Gaelic and traditional music" is how course leader Dr Will Lamb describes the album Briseadh an Fhearainn (Breaking the Ground) - which features some of the best work of his 2003 students at Lews Castle College in Stornaway on the Isle of Lewis.

It certainly is. Released to mark the college's half century, the 14-track CD is a showcase for students on the FE Diploma in Gaelic Language and Music and the HNC in Music Performance at Colaisde Bheinn na Faoghla, the college's Benbecula campus. Launched at the Isle of Benbecula House Hotel, it features 11 students and staff in an innovative and colourful tapestry of music from well executed Scottish reels to the gentle ballad Peggy Gordon, the upbeat opener Forest Lodge, the intriguing Scandinavian Set and the pretty, tumbling Long Night of Chloe's Passion.

Talented Ruaridh Pringle plays a key role on the album - he provides the guitar on Klezmer Tune and has also penned two original songs on the album which appear on his own CD - the reflective Pebbles and the livelier The Watchman with its African style rhythms. Instruments range from flutes to Scottish small pipes, whistle to acoustic bass, mandolin to bagpipes with tutor Iain MacDonald on bodhran and Dr Lamb himself providing bouzouki accompaniment on Assynt Crofters and MSR Set while the fine voice of Janet MacDonald is heard to good effect in three numbers including An Eala air a'Chuan.

Helped by in-house and guest tutors from Scottish traditional music circles, the students have produced an impressive, easy-on-the-ear CD of which they can be justly proud, relaxing and invigorating by degrees. A slice of wonderful music from the Western Isles and a great souvenir for the students themselves.

Jane Brace

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 57 of The Living Tradition magazine.