Michigan-based Embarr is a three-piece band that is self-described as “Celtic fusion” and a quick glance at the play list of their new CD quickly confirms the “Celtic”. The selections are a healthy mix of traditional melodies and traditional songs. Reels and jigs and the like mix with songs such as the Gaellic “Molly nag Cuach Ni Chulleanain” and the familiar “Red-haired Mary” and “St. Brendan’s Fair Isle” to make a very pleasant listening experience.
“Bushes, Briars, and Figs” is a really good collection of Celtic tunes and songs performed by a band that is obviously practiced at what they do. The arrangements are very well done and the performances are very tight and fun to listen to. In fact, my only real complaint about the CD is that it is a live one and so, in some of the tracks, parts of the song overpower other parts… and usually it is the vocals that get overwhelmed. This doesn’t happen often at all, however, and overall “Bushes, Briars, and Figs” is a CD that most lovers of traditional Celtic should really enjoy listening to.
If you enjoy well-performed traditional Celtic music then check out Embarr and “Bushes, Briars, and Figs”. It is well-worth your time.
Floyd Brigdon is a writer, musician, and teacher. In addition to writing reviews for Marc Gunn’s Celtic MP3s Music Magazine , he also writes book reviews for She Never Slept (a website devoted to science fiction, strange tales and horror) and, plays with Triskelion, and teaches English and theater at a community college right outside of Dallas, Texas.