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83 of 86 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enchanting and heartfelt
This is Julie's second album and is even more charming and wonderful than the first, with more rounded arrangements and wonderful backing from the likes of John McCusker and Michael McGoldrick. Yes all the lyrics are in Gaellic, and no I don't speak it, but I am won over by Julie's beautiful clear voice and by the homely charm of it all. Pop/rock it is not, you could call...
Published on 30 Mar. 2007 by David J. Baker

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0 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Classic Gaelic.
JF is an accomplished performer of Gaelic material. Her voice is perhaps a little bland if compared to someone of Karen Matheson's stature but the recording is still pleasing to all fans of Gaelic music'
Published on 26 Dec. 2012 by David C. Topping


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83 of 86 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enchanting and heartfelt, 30 Mar. 2007
By 
David J. Baker (Bristol, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cuilidh (Audio CD)
This is Julie's second album and is even more charming and wonderful than the first, with more rounded arrangements and wonderful backing from the likes of John McCusker and Michael McGoldrick. Yes all the lyrics are in Gaellic, and no I don't speak it, but I am won over by Julie's beautiful clear voice and by the homely charm of it all. Pop/rock it is not, you could call it Gaellic folk - the tunes are from her home of North Uist (Outer Hebrides), but that would be condemning it to the few wheraes Julie deserves to be heard by anyone who loves simple beautiful songs sang in a heartfelt and sincere manner. Check out the translated lyrics - Julie sings like her heart is breaking then you find the song is about a farmer spreading manure! - it all adds to the old world charm. In somes ways she's like a Scottish Kate Rusby - certainly the John McCusker fiddling underpinning some of the arrangements gives it a similar sound, and the songs are sometimes about girls pining for sailors gone off to sea (very Kate). Very relaxing and life affirming.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Scots Folk music, 30 Mar. 2010
By 
Fergal Woods "Axe Victim" (Leitrim, Ireland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cuilidh (Audio CD)
I must add my voice to the eloquent reviews already posted. Julie Fowlis is quite enchanting and the songs of her native Hebrides are of staggering high quality. She has a lovely unforced voice and, in addition, is an instrumentalist of no mean quality. This recording even betters her debut disc from 2005.

Scots Gaelic is marvellously expressive, being very rhythmic (check out the skipping mouth music sets introduced to a wider audience some years ago by Karen Matheson, but now elevated to a higher level by Fowlis) but it's inflections can also sound in turn mysterious, soft or aggressive. Song selection here is broad - ranging giving an enlightening overview of life in the Western Isles.

This disc has only one instrumental (3 on her debut CD) but her songs now feature more musical breaks and there is another list of stellar players (McGoldrick, McCusker, Doyle etc.) adding colour to these songs. Arrangements are mainly by Fowlis and Danu's Eamonn Doorly and this is a real "Trans-Atlantic Session" with parts recorded in the US (Chris Thile's wonderful mandolin playing) as well as in Ireland and Scotland.

This production features more harmony than last time (both male and female), and fellow Gaelic singer Kathleen McInnes (don't miss her solo album) features on a couple of tracks. If you want to sample this album as a complete novice try the opening track or track 10 - both guaranteed to bring a smile to your face. Julie repeats the practice of singing the final track unaccompanied and again does it wonderfully.

This is pure Hebridean Gold and it appears the seams are endless. All her 3 albums are glittering examples of how strong Scots traditional folk is, and the country is blessed with excellent female vocalists when you add Karine Polwart, Emily Smith and Eddi Reader to the above mentioned lasses. Order immediately !
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48 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful voice, endlessly listenable and engaging, 19 Jun. 2007
By 
Martin Thomas (Surrey, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cuilidh (Audio CD)
I also own Mar a Tha Mo Chridhe and it too is an excellent album. Julie Fowlis is a truly exceptional singer, having a voice that seems magical, with a clear, beautiful and pure tone - always a perfect fit for the engaging acoustic accompaniment of the fine supporting musicians. In that sense Julie Fowlis has made such a well-balanced album, endlessly listenable, engaging and overflowing with the clarity and emotion of her voice. On the basis of her recordings I saw her sing live on her 2007 tour with her band, including her man Éamon Doorley of Danú fame, and what a fine treat it was. Highly recommended. If you have any doubts then listen to the tracks within Julie's myspace.com site and be convinced.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breaks your heart then mends it again, 20 Jan. 2011
By 
This review is from: Cuilidh (Audio CD)
I saw/heard Julie Fowlis as part of an arts festival in Galway a couple of years ago and found myself alternately with tears pouring down my cheeks and unable to stay seated because of the need to jump, jig, whirl and dance. She has a voice of great and effortless purity, musicality and heart. To listen to Julie sing is to be convinced that opening your mouth and having heavenly sounds pour forth is our natural birthright. Alas that probably isn't true; its just that her voice is so natural and seemingly uncontrived.

Unless you speak Gaelic you won't have a CLUE what she's singing about (nor will you care) You'll just be amazed at her apparent facility to be singing tongue twisters with precision and speed (try Puirt-a-Beul-Set and I defy any listener to stay composed and seated!)

The charm, skill and passion of these songs are beautifully rendered by Julie and the musicians with fiddle pipe and drum - and for those coming to her music via MP3 and so missing the lyrics in translation she has a site which is her name with no spaces and a dot com, where you will find these helpfully rendered. It may or may not aid your enjoyment!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another discovery from Transatlantic Sessions, 12 July 2010
By 
M. F. Head "LaCabeza" (Reading, UK) - See all my reviews
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I don't think I would have purchased a CD of Gaelic music if I hadn't heard it presented in the context of US, Scottish and Irish folk music on the BBC series Transatlantic Sessions. Although I don't have any knowledge of Gaelic, it seemed to me immediately to be a language for singing, a bit like italian. The CD contains lots of haunting melodies and there is an English translation, but I like just to listen to the sound of the words and the music.
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43 of 47 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully fresh and utterly charming, 21 May 2007
By 
Huck Flynn "huckleberry" (northern ireland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cuilidh (Audio CD)
Shame on me but Julie Fowlis is a new name in my collection. However I know most of the musicians on the album and it is to Julie's credit that she's not overpowered or intimidated by such company. Shades of Clannad, Altan and Capercailie. The songs (all in Scots gaelic) are delivered in her lovely clear, warm voice - coping with a variety of themes and tempos effortlessly. Even better, these are unfamiliar songs, sung with feeling, arranged with restraint and subtlety and unadorned by intrusive "modern" influences or unnecessary gimmicks. You can just let the album flow over you and relax like you're on holiday in the Highlands. No new directions here then, just friendly, charming, reassuring surroundings. Encore.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Musician's musician, 7 Aug. 2007
By 
Paul Magnussen (Campbell, CA USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cuilidh (Audio CD)
Well, I'm going to add my voice to the chorus.

As I write, there are no musical samples available on Amazon; but I saw the glowing reviews. Then I read that Julie was Eamon Doorley's fiancée, and I thought, OK, he probably plays on her album: I'll take a chance.

I couldn't be more happy. Her voice is glorious. The other musicians read like a cross-section of all that's best in folk music, but the accompaniments never overwhelm or compete with the vocals, as they sometimes did with (for instance) Sólas. The arrangements, in which I can definitely detect the John McCusker touch, are wonderful, and both the original lyrics and translations are provided. The recording is crystal clear.

Try this for a first approximation. Imagine Kate Rusby singing in Gaelic, with John McCusker and Danú backing her. If you think you would like the result, then this album is for you.

The total time is 43'06".
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Scottish nightingale talking to the soul, 1 Oct. 2010
This review is from: Cuilidh (Audio CD)
This is a wonderful selection of Gaelic songs from this songbird from the Hebrides. Needless to say I do not understand Gaelic but this is music for the soul. If I listen to it often enough, I may learn to say the sounds myself.
The lady has not got a big voice but that is OK for a folky songbird. She has the crystal clear voice that fits this type of homespun music well.
This is a must-have for snug winter evenings.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Captivating, 21 Nov. 2007
By 
R. C. Tanton (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cuilidh (Audio CD)
Recommended by a friend, I was a little dubious about buying a Scottish folk music album. However the beauty of the voice and the musicianship wins through.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing, 7 Aug. 2013
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Julie is amazing.

If you want a fix of Gaelic Scottish.... look no further (except her other albums)

Now I want to see Julie live, but she doesn't venture much out of Scotland (which is a bit of a pain as I'm in Brighton down on the south coast ! )

About £130 return trip to fly up to Edinburgh for the 16th August (probably more on the train, and will take way longer).

Great seller.

Thanks.
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