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4.4 out of 5 stars7
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on 13 December 2009
This is the best traditional music album I've heard in a long time. Any Irish person with any interest in music will find the songs and melodies familiar. Damo has not created anything new here. He has not changed the melodies and essential arrangements of these old songs that so many of us grew up hearing; but what makes this album 5 stars for me is the passion of Damo's delivery.
On the recording you can hear a man in love with his culture and musical heritage. Damo is just as passionate singing 'The Rocky Road to Dublin' as he is singing his own amazing compositions like 'Colony' or 'Sing Our Cares Away'. Fan's of Damo's own material should be able to understand why he should make a recording like this and do it so damn perfectly!
With this album, Damo has re-ingited the fire that created these songs in the first place and reclaimed their beauty from the dreary, whiney ballad singers up and down the country and around the world. A fire kept burning over the years by the likes of Luke Kelly, whose passion and delivery Damo emulates beautifully here.
The musicianship and production is perfect for a collection of traditional songs like this and in my opinion far outshines Damo's friend Sinead O'Connor's 'Sean Nos Nua' recording from a few years ago which was equally well meaning but by far lacking in the Raw Power of 'The Rocky Road'.
If you love Damo and you love great irish music in all it many guises, you'll love 'The Rocky Road'.
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on 24 August 2008
A collection of Trad Arr tunes from Damo here so unfair to compare it to his previous 3 records.

Aided and abetted by John Sheahan and Barney McKenna of Dubliners fame for added authenticity Dempsey does justice and more to a clearly studiously picked selection of Irish songs, the highlights being a sumptuous rendition of The Pogues "Rainy Night In Soho" and a stab at coming-of-age ditty "Schooldays Over" which had all manner of lumps rising in my throat.

Not original material maybe but still vital nonetheless.
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on 6 February 2014
This is a great album with some wonderful renditions of traditional Irish songs supported by wonderful musicians and legends including members of the Dubliners. Damien is a powerful singer with a fantastic ear for a rhythm and beat. Get it, turn it up loud and open your windows
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on 18 May 2014
I have never bought any of Damians music before but hearing this first at my brothers house -i liked his arrangements of these irish classics. Excellent singing and playing.
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on 13 March 2016
My first Damien Dempsey album and I struck lucky! I was drawn to it initially by his wonderful cover of Ewan MacColl's Schooldays Over and wasn't sure what to expect from the rest of the CD. It's mainly a collection of trad. Irish songs which he covers superbly and totally brings to life as he does his version of the Pogues Rainy Night in Soho. If you've any interest in folk and/or Celtic music I can't recommend this CD highly enough. Great sound and production too.
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on 10 July 2014
It is heartening to see that the baton carried manfully for the last thirty years by Christy Moore and Shane MacGowan is now being carried by the next generation in the shape of Damien Dempsey . A fine piece of tiddley eye tie tie .
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on 13 August 2015
Bought this mostly because I flippin love The Rocky Road to Dublin - what a great track.
There are a couple others on the album which I like, but overall not that keen on the rest.
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