If you listen to one thing this week: And Now The Weather by Colm Mac Con Iomaire

The Ticket's Album of the Week is former Frames fiddler Colm Mac Con Iomaire's new album And Now The Weather/ Agus Anois An Aimsir

 

Recently described by Philip King as “the still centre at the heart of The Frames”, it’s easy to overlook Colm Mac Con Iomaire’s substantial body of work. A founding member of Kila and The Frames, an established film and theatre composer and Meteor Award nominee for his 2008 album The Hare’s Corner, the unassuming violinist is more adept at deflecting attention than basking in its glory.

And Now The Weather reflects Mac Con Iomaire’s skills as a composer, musician, arranger and limelight-sharing bandmate. Recorded in studios and homes across Wexford, Wicklow, Sheffield, Dublin and San Francisco with 21 fellow musicians (including Liam Ó’Maonlaí, Carol Keogh, Colm Ó’Snodaigh and Colm Quearney), these 10 gorgeous, pocket-sized instrumentals come from a classically trained head, a transient folk soul and an indomitable traditional heart. If The Gloaming finally dragged trad across the threshold into mainstream culture, Mac Con Iomaire is well placed to follow them.

Opener The Finnish Line sets the tone with a breezy lilt over light percussion, sweeping strings and a radiant piano riff. It’s the musical equivalent of a slow, deep exhalation at the end of a long day. The Dubliner’s arching and aching viola on A Study In Scarlet, initially penned for a John Carney production involving Scarlett Johansson, reveals a weight of emotion using the lightest of touches.

These are tunes that are effortlessly cinematic, conjuring images of weather-beaten coastlines and vast green expanses. The evocatively titled Set Sail plots its course through gentle waters guided by zither, banjo, piano, and a choir of Siren-esque voices, Mac Con Iomaire at the helm. The White Boat-Liam O’Reilly majestically continues the nautical theme with its keening violin riding waves of rapid bow strokes while fishing among the deepest of sorrows.

And yet, there’s an inherent sense of optimism at play. Sappho’s Daughter – inspired by the Theo Dorgan text – balances the Greek familial tale on a delicate air, and the final highlight A Farewell To The Sea builds its various layers into a stirring, joyful peak before subsiding quietly, an all too soon end to a consistently beautiful and frequently incandescent collection.

colmmacconiomaire.com

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.