Although Great Big Sea initially started out as a fairly traditional Newfoundland outfit, Up shows the band adding more rock muscle to the fiddles and accordions. It's still a pretty traditional sound by most standards, with jigs and reels galore, but it allows the band to do a revved-up cover of Slade's "Run Runaway" and make it appealing to both the traditionalist and the rock fan. There's everything you'd expect from a bunch of young Maritime musicians from Canada: a good dose of Celtic, songs about the sea and about drinking, a good dose of fun, but a healthy reverence for the musical tradition. "Mari-Mac," where the lyrics accelerate to a terrifying speed by the end, is worth the price of admission alone.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Sean Carruthers