Oisín MacDiarmada - The Green Branch: A masterclass in fluid understatement

The Green Branch/An Géagán Glas
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Artist: Oisin MacDiarmada with Samantha Harvey
Genre: Traditional
Label: Claddagh Records

Sligo fiddler Oisín MacDiarmada, a driving force of Téada, has long had a reputation for balancing the intricacies of a tune with a deeply expressive style.

It's been 13 years since his last solo recording, but The Green Branch offers ample evidence of his continuing growth as a musician with an ear cocked to the subtle undercurrents of a tune.

And what tunes – MacDiarmada’s taste is impeccable. His own tunes are a masterclass in fluid understatement, while his choices from Ed Reavy, Seán Ryan and Charlie Lennon, among others, sidle up to one another with gleeful ease.

Pianist Samantha Harvey brings a spare and thoughtful accompaniment, with some finely chosen percussive dance steps lending another dimension to the mix.

Siobhán Long

Siobhán Long

Siobhán Long, a contributor to The Irish Times, writes about traditional music and the wider arts