Format: Compact Disc
Released Date: March 1, 2005
Number of Discs: 0
Label Name: Manhattan Records
CELTIC WOMAN is the brainchild of David Downes, a composer/conductor who was heavily involved with the American production of RIVERDANCE. Not surprisingly, all of the lights, drama, and musical bombast of that esteemed show are present on this production as well. Instead of showcasing legions of dancers, however, CELTIC WOMAN puts the emphasis on the rich heritage of traditional and contemporary Irish music, as performed by five talented female performers from varying musical backgrounds.
Though the melodies are often extremely simple and unadorned, the production is just as lush and majestic as anything on Yanni's LIVE AT THE ACROPOLIS, and should appeal to fans of that disc. The opening track features the extraordinary, bell-like vocal timbre of 15-year-old Chloe Agnew over an orchestral backing that includes tin whistle. "Isle of Inisfree" showcases Orla Fallon, whose dark voice and supple harp playing make for a haunting listening experience. On numerous tracks, several of the Irish sirens sing together; a particular standout is a soothingly sweet version of Enya's breakthrough hit "Orinoco Flow."