Her strong connection with the ocean, even traceable in her name (meaning “maiden of the sea”), has brought Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh to collect six songs for Thar Toinn / Seaborn, a concept EP exploring the ancestral suggestions and stories linking mankind to the ocean.
The material selected for this release covers the two main epitomes in which the sea has always been embodied: the generous mother that feeds us, and the cruel master, indifferent to our lives.
The first two songs immediately display both sides of the coin. On one hand, the opening track Faoiseamh Faoistine is based on a poem by Danny Sheehy urging the listener to bask in the marine nature; on the other hand, the lyrics of Air Failirinn Iù carry the sad thoughts of a young woman who relives the drowning of his lover.
The EP smoothly flows through tales of love and loss, supernatural intervention and songs wishing good fortune to the fishermen, all delivered by Nic Amhlaoibh’s warm and distinctive voice. If the superb singing gets the spotlight, another factor that contributes to the success of this release is the meticulous work behind it, especially the soft and often emotional arrangements, involving both traditional and modern instruments like the Yaybahar, and the accurate choice of material, deeply rooted in the artistic tradition of these islands.
Whether one has already come across her music or not, this ambitious but intensely personal release will leave its mark on the listener’s memory for a long while.Michele Mele
Released on CD and digitally on 11 March 2020. Recorded, mastered and engineered by Padraig Ryan.
1. Faoiseamh Faoistine
2. Air Failirini Iù
3. Tà Na Bàid Go Doimhin Sa Bhfarraige, Sìos Cois Na Tra Agus Amach Chun Na Farraige
4. Sweet Kingwilliamstown
6. Port Na Bpùcaì