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Fire of Freedom

January 12, 1999 | Format: MP3

$7.99
Also available in CD Format
Song Title
Time
Popularity  
30
1
1:20
30
2
4:08
30
3
4:02
30
4
6:19
30
5
4:00
30
6
6:26
30
7
6:07
30
8
1:30
30
9
4:47
30
10
5:32
30
11
4:29
30
12
7:26
30
13
7:28
30
14
5:39
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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: March 12, 1993
  • Release Date: January 12, 1999
  • Label: SBK
  • Copyright: (C) 1993 SBK Catalog
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 1:09:13
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B000V88DEQ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #68,263 Paid in Albums (See Top 100 Paid in Albums)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Larry Kirwan writes theatrical music both literally and figuratively. Sometimes the epic nature of the music comes close to bombast, sometimes the drama veers toward melodramatic, and sometimes his melodic reach exceeds his vocal grasp.
But what songs.
My criterion for 5 stars is that every track has to be memorable. This disk nails it. One is tempted to go track by track to describe the music. As others have indicated, this is a band with disparate roots and influences; its central tendency sounds something like what might have happened if Springsteen grew up in Wexford listening to traditional Irish music instead of R&R and R&B. Like Springsteen at his best, not everything is pedal-to-the-metal; Black 47's music encompasses a range of subject matter and emotion, but with a perspective rooted in Kirwan's immigrant alienation and political interests. "Banks of the Hudson" is what might happen if a traditional murder ballad crashed into Manhattan complete with Geoff Blythe doing his best Clarence Clemmons imitation; "Funky Ceili" is a joyful celebration of dissoluteness; "James Connolly" an anthemic celebration of the Irish Marxist revolutionary; the quiet "Fanatic Heart" is both plaintive and chilling; and "Living in America" is the band's piece de resistance -- an evocation of the slights and hopes of immigrant men and women in America. Like I said it is tempting to review each track.
It would be easy to fall flat on your face trying to pull this off -- the politics degenerating into sloganeering, the passion into cheap sentimentality, and the music into some kind of ersatz folk hydrid.
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Format: Audio CD
This album is a little tougher than one might expect from a celtic band. While you can't divorce the celtic influence it is definitely supported by an American twist.
This cd is fun as in the exuberant "Funky Ceili" (a great song, great story, in neo-celtic style,) "40 Shades of Blue" or "Rockin' the Bronx". More often however there is an edgy darkness here whether in detailing Irish history ("James Connolly" or "Black 47") or in the contemporary ("Banks of the Hudson"). Don't expect the Irish Tenors here or even the Chieftains. The beauty of those artists aren't here (although the artistry is). This is more thought-provoking, more raw, more contemporary (lyrically and vocally).
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
From the first notes of its first song, Black 47's 1993 album "Fire of Freedom" pulsates with Celtic flavor and energy. This Irish-American band, whose name invokes the Great Famine that killed one million Irish people and forced a million more to emigrate between 1845 and 1852, imparts to their songs a powerful storytelling quality that recalls Irish literary traditions. The portraits that emerge from this powerful and evocative album are of wounded people who are part Irish and part American, and yet are not wholly at home in either country.

The album's opening song, "Livin' in America (Fordham Road 8:00 am)," a short prologue, introduces a melodic line that will be reincorporated into the album later on; the mention of Fordham Road reminds the listener how interested the members of Black 47 are in Irish emigration to America generally and New York City specifically - not just back in 1847, but nowadays, where the Fordham Road-Bainbridge Avenue area of the Bronx is a contemporary gathering place for immigrants from the Irish Republic of today.

The energetic "Maria's Wedding" benefits from the hip-hop quality that lead singer Larry Kirwan incorporates into the song's vocal delivery, and from the melodic saxophone and trombone riffs that predominate throughout. Like other songs on the album, it tells the story of an Irish-American protagonist having a great deal to drink and then behaving in a socially unproductive manner. In the case, the song's protagonist tells of the time when he drank heavily, went to the wedding of his ex-girlfriend Maria, and began "dancin' like Baryshnikov all across the high altar." I'm not sure how Maria can be expected to respond to the speaker's assurances that "I'm so sorry I wrecked your wedding.
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Format: Audio CD
This is one of the decade's best albums. Every track is memorable, though "James Connolly" and "Fire of Freedom" are the ones that stick with me long after the music stops. This is Black 47 at the top of their game (or at least as good as they get in the studio: Nothing beats them live). A mixture of straight-on rock 'n' roll, with Celtic flavors on some tracks, and reggae beats or hip-hop thrown in occasionally. The musicianship here is incredible at times; the horn section blends with the pipes for some truly inspired sounds.
Look for a CD put out in 1995, called "Keep it Reel," with Seanchai (Chris Byrne from Black 47), Eileen Ivers, and Pat McGuire. Absolutely awesome live recording of Irish hip-hop, and several other genres fused together, with brilliant lyrics by Seanchai. Hard to find.
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