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WINIFRED HORAN Just One Wish Shanachie SHAN 78051

There are 11 tracks here, with all but two of the tunes written by Winifred Horan. Her fiddling's as good as ever but I found nothing to inspire me to listen closely. First impressions aren't always the best, but when I heard the first track fade out, my heart sank. It doesn't suit traditional fiddling one bit. My youngest son's the fiddler of the family, and he made the comment that it faded because there wasn't an end to the tune.

I remember Horan as part of "Cherish The Ladies", heard her in concert and on CD with them, but this just doesn't do her justice for some reason. There isn't a memorable tune here in the sense that I'd want to play any of them. Don't get me wrong, her fiddling's impeccable but the tunes are unmemorable; all pleasant stuff but falling between several stools. I prefer traditional music to have an edge to it but this doesn't do anything for me. Perhaps the inset blurb about "The charismatic fiddler. delivers a beguiling mix of atmospheric compositions grounded in Celtic and other roots music from around the world." ought to be changed to "a bewildering mix." I'm not sure what 'world music' really is; if this is a sample, then I'm disappointed.

Horan's a great fiddle player but the whole idea of this lets her down. She's technically brilliant but there's no heart in any of these tracks. If you like 'world music', you'll probably like this; I'm afraid I don't.

Mick Furey

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This album was reviewed in Issue 53 of The Living Tradition magazine.