Clannad have been making music for a very long time now, with their unique blend of ancient Irish folk and modern rock and pop influences. There are two things everyone knows about Clannad: "They used to have Enya in them, didn't they?" and "They did that Robin Hood programme, right?" The answer to both of these is yes, but Enya is not the vocal star here (she departed in the early eighties), it's her sister Moya Brennan who has a voice that has not aged a day over the band's career. It remains pure and beautiful as it was on the Robin of Sherwood album. And there's a reason everyone remembers that show - the highly memorable memories that Clannad construct are a testament to the songwriting skill of all five members.
On Nadur that writing skill is brought to bear on songs that defy categorisation in many cases. Some, such as the lovely instrumental Lamh ar Lamh, are clearly folk, but most belong in a category marked "only Clannad does this"! They bring in guest vocalist Duke Special (probably not his real name) on standout track Brave Enough to great effect, and this song swells like a wave on a stormy sea while others employ more stripped back and gentle arrangements to create tracks with the beauty of a dewdrop on a leaf. Pol Brennan's whistle and flute playing, having been notably absent from a couple of their albums, is brought to the fore and sounds magical.
It could be said that they went through a period around the time they released the albums Lore and Landmarks when they struggled to recapture the greatness of their Robin of Sherwood glory days. Nadur shows that they've still got the skills, the voices and the talent to match the best of what they've given us in the past. If you like Clannad even just a little bit, then buy this album.