PRICE: $15.50
IN STOCK
ARTIST
TITLE
Anointed Queen
FORMAT
CD

LABEL
CATALOG #
STR 010CD STR 010CD
GENRE
RELEASE DATE
8/12/2014

Alison O'Donnell will be familiar to folk (and rare vinyl) fans the world over as founding member of Irish prog-folk band Mellow Candle, whose only album (the 1972 classic Swaddling Songs) now fetches upwards of £1000 on the rare occasions an original copy comes up for sale on eBay. Here she teams up with London-based "folk noir" outfit Firefay for an album of dark folk beauty. At the core of Firefay are Adam and Carole Bulewksi -- Carole's French heritage occasionally lending a klezmer/gypsy-folk tone to the instrumentation that sits well with Alison's naturally psych-tinged melodies, while Adam's minimal, considered production melds everything together beautifully. Across the album's 11 tracks, Firefay support O'Donnell's soaring vocals in stark fashion, providing the perfect accompaniment which is never intrusive or busy for the sake of it, always allowing Alison's crystalline tone and astonishing range (and the evocative lyrics of both Alison and Carole) to shine through. Alison made something of a resurgence during the "acid-folk revival" of the mid-2000s collaborating with Circulus, The Owl Service and later Ireland's Agitated Radio Pilot and United Bible Studies on various live and studio projects, appearing on Cathedral's The Guessing Game album, and making two wonderful records under her own name along the way (Mise Igus Ise [2006] and Hey Hey Hippy Witch [2011]). Alison's thirst for treading new and interesting musical pastures, and her youthful exuberance, belie the fact that she has a 40+ year career in the music industry behind her. Mellow Candle was formed by a 15 year-old O'Donnell in 1965 while she was still attending a convent school in Ireland, and after moving to South Africa following MC's demise, she continued with various other projects in both the folk and jazz worlds before moving back to Dublin and embarking on the most prolific period of her career -- and yet she continues to push boundaries at every opportunity. This latest release is another fine addition to her post-Mellow Candle canon and exhibits no signs at all that she's going to call it a day any time soon. File next to: Mellow Candle, The Owl Service, Circulus, Malicorne, Gabriel & Marie Yacoub.