Q - 8/01, p.1353 stars out of 5
- "...A treat for lovers of Irish instrumental music..."
Mojo (Publisher) - 7/01, p.109
"...Earthy, soulful and instinctive..."
Lunasa: Donogh Hennessy (guitar, whistle); Sean Smyth (fiddle, whistle); Kevin Crawford (flute, whistle); Cillian Vallely (whistle, Uilleann pipes).
Additional personnel includes: David Odlum (guitar); Ed Deane (lap steel guitar); Miriam Ingram (clarinet); Pat Fitzpatrick (piano, harmonium); Dave Hingerty (percussion).
Recorded at Margerite Studios, Dublin, Ireland.
Personnel: David Odlum, Donogh Hennessy (guitar); Ed Deane (lap steel guitar); Sean Smyth (fiddle); Kevin Crawford (flute); Cillian Vallely (Uilleann pipe); Trevor Hutchinson (double bass).
Audio Mixers: David Odlum; Ed Kenehan.
Recording information: Marguerite Studios, Dublin, Ireland.
Photographer: Giorgia Bertazzi.
Arranger: Kevin Crawford.
L£nasa has become one of the best and most exciting Celtic ensembles in the world by updating Irish tradition in a way more subtle than usual. Where other bands incorporate Asian or African percussion, synthesizers, and electric instruments, L£nasa mostly relies on a different rhythmic approach while keeping the core instrumentation largely traditional (with the exception of string bassist Trevor Hutchinson). That said, there are a few electric guitars and other exotica (clarinet, lap steel, etc.) on The Merry Sisters of Fate -- but they mostly provide little more than subtle shadings of texture. As usual, the sonic focus is on the outstanding fiddler Sean Smyth, flutist Kevin Crawford, and piper Cillian Vallelly; on barnburning rave-ups like the "Merry Sisters of Fate" reel set and the "Minor Bee" jig set, they fly through the tunes with joyful abandon, pushed along by Donogh Hennessey's percussive guitar and Hutchinson's thrumming bass. And on more restrained fare, such as the eerie "Killarney Boys of Pleasure," their multitracked parts combine to produce a dark and complex atmosphere. Highly recommended. ~ Rick Anderson