Appel Rekords, 2013
For a decade Comas has been together, playing traditional Irish music with members from Ireland, Irish America and mainland Europe. Aidan Burke is an Irish fiddler (with Kevin Burke as cousin). Jackie Moran is an Irish percussionist who became a pillar in the Irish music scene of Chicago. Philip Masure is the well-known Belgian DADGAD guitarist of Orion, Laïs, Ambrozijn and Urban Trad fame, with many a recording under his own name and a guest musician. Breton flutist Sylvain Barou is a tolerated support only, recently replaced by New Yorker Isaac Alderson (best known from the Eileen Ivers Band and the Runa trio), who plays a pleasing flute and some gorgeous uilleann pipes.
“Charge” is the band’s long awaited second album, aptly named because the Gaelic comas translates as power. This heavy-duty receptacle is firmly rooted in traditional Irish music, but open to anything that comes along the way. The original groove and energy is still there, though the band’s sound is more mature. The instrumental sets are a mix of traditional and contemporary tunes (listen to the opening set ft. the traditional “Joe Toms Reel”, “The Brocca” penned by Liz Carroll, and Brian Finnegan’s “The Donegal Lass”). There are lots of tunes from Aidan, Isaac, Philip and Jackie themselves. A highlight is their rendition of the beautiful traditional air “Cape Clear”.
There is the Irish song “Bold Donnelly” (perhaps you know it from Irish trad band Dervish) and the old Flemish song “Het Luiaardsgild” (The Guild of Sloths): Ik ben van het luiaards gild en van de bedelklerken, die liever spelen en drinken gaan dan dat ze zouden werken. Sparen ligt niet in mijnen aard, geld is om uit te geven. (I am of the guild of sloths and of the mendicants, who prefer to play and drink than they would work. Saving is not in my nature, money is meant to be spent.) Every cent spent for this record is certainly worth your while.
© Walkin’ T:-)M