Gwenan Gibbard - Hen Ganeuon Newydd

2023 studio album

Hen Ganeuon Newydd - Gwenan Gibbard

the bright young folk review

The traditional music of the British Isles is one of the most diverse and surprising and it is always delightful to discover the different peculiarities of their constituent nations and regions. In her new release Hen Ganeuon Newydd (New Old Songs) Gwenan Gibbard offers a collection of songs from the Llyn peninsula and neighbouring Eifionydd in North-West Wales.

The lyrics she has gathered mostly come from late Victorian and Edwardian collections of songs from that area and she presents them in a philologically accurate way with arrangements based on the triple harp, the most iconic among the Welsh instruments. These are tales of an old world, where living was simple and music played a pivotal role in the preservation of local folklore and traditions, a redolent testament to the richness of this region’s culture.

The overall sound is delicate, at times beautifully sparse, meditative and haunting like the lands these lyrics come from. There is a good variety of themes and moods, for example the album includes the heartfelt farewell song Ffarwel i Bencaenewydd, the humorous Sgirt Guta Nain, literally meaning ’short skirt’, and the love song Dachw Long.

Hen Ganeuon Newydd is a window to the past, but also a praiseworthy gift to future generations by an eclectic and talented artist.

Michele Mele

Released on 16 June 2023 on CD and digitally on Sain Recordiau Cyf.

1. Meibion a Merched
2. Ffarwel i Bencaenewydd
3. Y Dryddedd Waith Yw’r Goel
4. Y Gwch Fach Lwydlas
5. Dachw Long
6. Sgert Gwta Nain
7. Cariad y Garddwr
8. Trafinidiaeth yn Llyn
9. Y Morwd Mwdn
10. Y Gwcw Ryfel
11. Rhigymau
12. Anni Bach Rwy’n Mynd i Ffwrdd

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