Matt Ender

Miles of Skye

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Matt Ender might well have a Celtic heart, and Miles of Skye is the result of his trip to Ireland and listening to the great Donal Lunny on CD. But Ender is no Lunny, and his particular take on Irish music -- even when he touches the traditional end of it, owes far more to new age than anything that's come out of the Emerald Isle. It starts off hopefully, with a sprightly "Miss Monaghans," and Ender's own "Dancin' in Ahearn" has promise. However, it all falls apart with the vocal title track, while "Ballyvalone" is simply lightweight. The traditional "False Fly" is pleasantly delivered, but unmemorable, and from there it's really all downhill, with a low point being the absolutely cheesy synthesizer tones at the beginning of "My Wild Irish Rose." Ender's solo piano pieces are simplistic, with catchy melodies that might have been inspired by Erin, but which contain nothing of the auld sod in the notes. Handy as background for a dinner party, but not enough substance for serious listening.

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