2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Words And Music to my ears,
This review is from: Words & Music (Audio CD)
I've an old cassette of this album, the version with the black and white image of the dolmen atop a sackcloth background. When I bought it at the onset of the 90's I'd not heard of Planxty but liked the look of the cover and decided to give it a go (I was reminded of some of the imagery Clannad were using, which at the time must have influenced my choice). If the album had had the alternate full-colour cover it has here it wouldn't have caught my eye. I'm glad it did catch my eye, and whilst I've never upgraded this album to cd, that old cassette still gets played more than most of the old cassettes it shares the cupboard with. And still there are two tracks that stand out from the set for me.
The first is the resplendent instrumental that opens the album "Queen Of The Rushes/Paddy Fahey's Jig", entering with lone bodhran spelling out an insistent rhythm, being joined by swirling pipes and then the rest of the band creating something just wonderful.
The second is the ballad "Lord Baker", a really exceptional piece sung by Christy Moore, his voice captivating and the musical setting it resides in a beautifully-crafted evocation of the storyline. This recording is to this day amongst my favourite performances in the folk idiom. And perhaps I'm the only person who rates it so highly: whilst I've not exactly scoured cyberspace I've yet to see anybody else even mention it when reviewing the album, aside from as a low-point, which almost conjures as much mystification as "Lord Baker" does mystique.
I have only heard one of Planxty's other albums, so cannot comment from experience as to how this one fits in with the rest of their canon, but I hear this one is regarded by many almost as the runt of the litter. Still, I like it, and have enjoyed many years of pleasure from that old cassette.