Live Gallery: Caoimhin O’Raghallaigh & Cormac Begley @ St. Luke’s, Cork 16 Dec 2016

Caoimhin O’Raghallaigh & Cormac Begley

On the heels of their recent sold out show in Dublin’s National Concert Hall, Irish trad duo Caoimhin O’Raghallaigh & Cormac Begley bring their experimental sound to Cork’s St. Luke’s.

With Lynched, Ye Vagabonds, and Ensemble Ériu continuing their impressive ascents, it seems blatantly apparent that there is a significant trad revival going on in Ireland at the moment. Perhaps it was always in rude health though. At any rate, with their always impressive and sometimes spellbinding show on Friday is Cork, Caoimhin O’Raghallaigh & Cormac Begley showed they wished to both pay tribute to Irish music and to expand, build, and explore the archetypal sounds of the genre.

At times their approach has a slight Scandanavian vibe, even drawing on the gentler aspects of folk metal. In general, their performance reflects one’s life: at times it’s jaunty; at times mournful, and sometimes it’s both at the same time. Both musicians solos are particularly impressive. First, Cormac Begley’s plays an old traditional song dealing with a man’s banishment from his hometown. Despite the lack of a vocal on the song, it perfectly conveyed the want, longing, and pining that you can imagine accompanied the banishment.

Later Caoimhin O’Raghallaigh explores beautifully unusual sounds via his fiddle and a home made pedal board. Utilising delay and other akin atmospherics, the solo explores tones that are much closer to the ambient work of Stars of the Lid and Anoice than the trad of The Dubliners or the aforementioned Lynched. Spellbound, the crowd sat in awe at the performance, delivering rapturous applause upon the piece’s completion.

Check out some wonderful pictures from the evening courtesy of Shane J Horan Photographer.

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