Sunday January 12, 2014
by Anastasia Tsioulcas
First Listen: The Gloaming, ‘The Gloaming’
The prime minister of Ireland showed up for The Gloaming’s first gig; that’s how big the supergroup’s formation has been for fans of Irish music. Here at NPR Music, Bob Boilen and I have been waiting anxiously for the band’s first album ever since The Gloaming made its U.S. debut at globalFEST in January 2012.
Featuring an unusual lineup of singer, two fiddles, guitar and piano, The Gloaming is by any measure an all-star ensemble. It includes three Irish artists: the superb singer Iarla Ó Lionaird (who grew up as a traditional sean-nós vocalist but is also a veteran of the experimental Afro-Celt Sound System), the legendary fiddler Martin Hayes and the younger player Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh, who plays a 10-stringed violin that he calls a hardanger d’amore, with its five playing strings and five drone-like sympathetic strings. The band is rounded out by two Americans, the masterly guitarist Dennis Cahill and, perhaps surprisingly, pianist Thomas Bartlett (a.k.a. Doveman), better known as a colleague of Antony and the Johnsons, The National, Nico Muhly and Sam Amidon.
To read the rest of the article and listen to tracks from the album click here