- Released: June 7, 1994
- Label: Warner Bros Uk
Q - 9/94, p.983 Stars
- Good - "...an extraordinary acoustic guitar sound that flows from the speakers....Bloom could carve himself a profitable niche..."
- 1.Cold Comfort
- 2.True Blue
- 3.Diamond Mountain
- 4.Right Here, Right Now
- 5.Sunny Sailor Boy
- 6.Black Is the Color
- 7.To Begin To
- 8.Freedom Song
- 9.Holding Back the River
- 10.Backround Noise
- 11.The Fertile Rock
- 12.I Did Time
Personnel: Luka Bloom (vocals, guitar); Mairead Ni Mhaonaigh (vocals).
Producers: Paul Ashe-Browne, Brian Masterson, Luka Bloom.
Engineers: Paul Ashe-Browne, Brian Masterson.
Recorded at Windmill Lane Studios, Dublin, Ireland.
Personnel: Luka Bloom (vocals, guitar); Mair‚ad N¡ Mhaonaigh (vocals).
Audio Mixers: Paul Ashe-Brown; Brian Masterson.
Recording information: WindMill Lane Studios, Dublin, Ireland.
Photographer: Frank Ockenfels.
Arranger: Luka Bloom.
Luka Bloom seems more influenced by geography than most singer/songwriters. If RIVERSIDE was the sound of an Irishman in Chinatown (as one song so aptly put it), and THE ACOUSTIC MOTORBIKE was a return home to the traditional rhythms of Irish folk music, TURF stands apart from geography, cohesively blending the themes of both previous albums.
This time however, besides a few embellishments, the album is almost entirely Bloom and his guitar alone (four tracks were recorded live in a pub). Working without a net seems to bring out the best in his songwriting, including a newfound ability to address weighty subjects; "Freedom Song" evokes not only Dublin squatters but American civil rights icon Rosa Parks in a stark statement of the universality of human rights. However, TURF also addresses less weighty concerns; "Holding Back the River" and "Right Here Right Now" show that Luka Bloom seems to write beautiful love songs as easily as buying a pint. As always, his choice of covers is impeccable. This time around he tackles both old-school Irish traditional music in "Black is the Color," and the neo-traditional Irish revival in Waterboy Mike Scott's "Sunny Sailor Boy."