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“Feels Like Home”
Mary Fahl: Going Home
Tommy Makem: Red Haired Mary
Jimmy McCarthy: No Frontiers
Anonymous: Galileo – Better
Yusef Islam: Silent Sunlight
Randy Newman: Feels Like Home
Traditional: She Moved Through the Fair – The Wild Mountainside – I Know That You Care – Suo Gan – Westering Home

Matthew Gilsenen, James Nelson, Daryl Simpson (tenors), Martin Quinn (multi instrumentalist), Colm Henry, Gavin Murphy (piano), Andrew Quinn (drums and percussion), John O’Brien (pipes and whistles), Radio Teilifis Erin (RTE) Concert Orchestra, Omagh Community Chorus
Recorded at JAM Studios, Kells, County Meath, Ireland, Studio 1, RTE Radio Centre, Dublin, Ireland & 1st Omagh Presbyterian Church, Omagh, Northern Ireland (2011) – 47’22
Telarc Records TEL-32982-02 – Booklet in English

Should we offer thanks for the numerous progeny spawned from the formation of the original Three Tenors? Let’s see, there were the Three Canadian Tenors, Three Chinese Tenors, Three Counternors, Three Mo’ Tenors...some better than others. This group, The Celtic Tenors, has ventured into various genres in their recordings but it is in the traditional music of Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England that they excel. In this, their 7th CD, Matthew Gilsenen, James Nelson and Daryl Simpson have compiled a collection of tunes which range from newly minted to ancient Celtic lullabies but which seem tied together by the common threads of love and longing.

All three men have fine, well trained voices capable of bobbing and weaving together in tight harmonies without losing the message being conveyed. I would have wished for better material for this disc because when in the constraints of a 45 minute time frame it’s difficult to get around having more than a couple unremarkable cuts. While the individual musicians, orchestra and chorus are all excellent, the heavy orchestrations are not needed here and at times threaten to overwhelm the line of the singers. It’s in the more traditional numbers, sung a cappella or at most, with very minimal accompaniment from the whistle or pipes that they truly shine. She Moves Thru the Fair and The Wild Moutainside are prime examples, leading up to the sweetly lovely Welsh lullaby, Suo Gan, exquisite in its simplicity. They wrap up the disc with Westering Home, a Scottish song based on an Irish song, illustrating the interwoven ties among the lands. This cross-cultural, uplifting message is what Feels Like Home and the Celtic Tenors are ultimately all about.

Suzanne Torrey




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