Poor Angus is a Canadian Celtic band that is energetic, inventive and talented. Their CD album Gathering is a collection of mostly original songs and tunes with a Celtic flavor. Six of the vocals are written by band members and are great songs that are performed with strong throaty voices and seamless accompaniment. The tunes are lively and include the appropriate Celtic pipes and whistles. The title tune The Gathering has an almost rock beat using the traditional Celtic instruments. It tends to grow on you.
Looking at some specific songs/tunes: Never Come Back features Joel Guenther as writer and lead singer about the emotional conflict in war. He also penned Something I Can't See which is also a fine tune with a somewhat mystical character.
The song Silver Islet tells of the men who go down into the bowels of the earth where the sea is above waiting for the chance to end the miner's lives. Andrew Bryan teams up with Joel on this one to deliver a powerful account of the miner's experiences.
On the lighter side is William MacGillivray a tune about a man who was very generous with his money except when it came time to pay back his loans. Also a well-worn sea chanty by Stan Rogers called Barrett's Privateers is included for the enjoyment of folks who like crusty ballads.
The instrumentals are also well done, form instance, Giant Set with Andrew Bryan as writer, fiddle player, guitar player and mandolin player all on the same tune—amazing. As I mentioned before, the accompaniment on all of the music for the album is really outstanding.
Poor Angus consists of Brian LeBlanc, Andrew Bryan, DJ Moons, Joel Guenther and Ross Griffins.
You can go to the band's website www.poorangus.com to hear previews of the album contents. If your Celtic library is wanting for some fresh material, Gathering would make a "sound" investment.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2014, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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