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DONNIE MUNRO ‘Gaelic Heart’ (Hypertension, 2002)

Former Runrig vocalist Donnie Munro has gone back to his roots for his latest solo album. It contains songs that were his earliest musical influences and all are sung in his native language, Gaelic. Joining him on the album are Allan Cuthbertson and Chris Harley on keyboards, Kate Stewart-Liddon on fiddle and Iain Macdonald on flute and whistle. The album is a beautiful collection of mellow arrangements of traditional songs. Opener ‘An Ela Bhan’ (The White Swan) features Donnie Munro’s distinctive vocals over a swirling keyboard arrangement. ‘Sine Bhan’ (Fair Jean) has female backing vocals and keys combining before the vocals of Donnie Munro take over. A very Enya sounding backing to this song. Other highlights include ‘Calum Sgaire’ (Calum’s Boat), with it’s Steeleye Span style backing vocals and ‘Chi Mi’n Tir’ (See The Land), with Munro dueting with an uncredited female vocalist - very nice it is too. Not a bad track on the album and I can’t praise enough the vocals of Donnie Munro (I’ve been a Runrig fan for many years!).

Not the folk-rock of Runrig but more likely to appeal to fans of Enya, Clannad and the mellower moments of Mostly Autumn. Munro’s vocals are a real highlight and suit these arrangements perfectly. If you have never heard him sing before start with this CD or Runrig’s classic album ‘The Cutter & The Clan’.For a something a little different add this to your CD collection.



Review by Jason Ritchie

***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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