6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
I like it .......but I wish I liked it more
, April 10, 2012
In Ireland you are obviously spoiled for choice when it comes to this genre with the best artists playing local sessions in their spare time(apart from enya).
That being said I am a closeted fan of celtic woman, though I'd rather die than admit that to my schoolfriends.
Unfortunately I am not as much a fan of this cd as I was genuinely hoping to be. The problems I have are:
-It seems incredibly rushed with less tracks and less lush and complex arrangements
-3 singers are not enough, an extra girl should have been brought in on time for the concert
-Track arrangements have become tooooo formulaic, 2 mairead solos 1 trad 1 part ballad multi tune arrangement comparable with shanendoah/reels. 1 diddly-i song teir abhaile riu(see ceili/nil sen la/christmas pipes all of which are better). You could probably start laying bets on which clannad back catalogue song they'll choose to "reinterpret" next with hilarious hippy lyrics that sometimes jar with the retained irish lyric. 1 uplifting orchestral piece handled well sung well but still inexplicably bland: you'll never walk alone. 1 epic opening song which I liked but it needed to be shortened or have variety added(again the hippy lyrics fell over the line into hilarity in some parts here). Lisa sings another mother earth broadway/country ballad followed by mother earth traditional ballad. Chloe sings a stock classical piece with no publishing rights that means celtic woman tries to borrow some audience from il divo josh groban etc. Chloe sings a secret garden cover, again I'll be running bets on what the next cover from secret garden will be(a group I highly recommend for actual original music). Sailing is the epic bagpiping piece in the middle to provide a celtic loincloth to the track selection, but a lovely stirring track.
-Not enough focus on the vocals this time around. My favourite cd from the group is the first followed very closely by the ANJ because of the simple clear yet impressive and haunting voices that were properly emphasised with each piece. For whatever reason it is hard to hear the performers and their voices in parts of the tracks and they could be removed from a lot of parts of the album leaving the choir without changing the songs, a terrible indictment when all 3 women have such lovely voices. Maybe its just me Im no expert but the harmonys between the girls seemed non-existent and I was not as impressed with the vocals as I have been on other albums. Again not anything to do with the current performers who are just as talented as ever but while the production, the orchestra, choir, bagpipes, etc were turned up to 11 it seems the little effort was put into arranging the solo singing.
Positives: Lisa lambe has a lovely sensual voice, her track selection of a spaceman came travelling is a favourite of mine as I love the idea of a christian hymn that incorporates space travel +alien angels, doctor who etc. I actually dont find her interpretation of black is the colour to be weird when she doesnt change the object of the song to male from female as alot of the time when this song is envisioned the singer might be female but the female voice is the voice of the "true love" in the listeners mind.
-mostly new material, I simply dont think there were any more arrangements left to do of you raise me up/danny boy/mo ghile mear.
Id still recommend this group but its annoying when they literally only cover tracks I already have by other groups and then lose the sincerity and vocal power that leads me to buy the cd anyway.