Ballycotton

Mondland

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This is a continuation of Ballycotton's 2001 release A la Cut, whereby multi-world influences seep into the acoustic folk of this one-time traditional Celtic group. Here, strains of Eastern, Austrian, as well as Celtic styles flavor the music. In an unexpected twist, Ballycotton even added vocal adornments to four tracks -- "JoEh," "The Flood," "Valhalla," and "Bettelwalzer" -- but they are still essentially an all-instrumental ensemble as those vocal embellishments are more chant-like than lyrical. The real strength of this group is its exceptional ability on stringed instruments and the interaction with one another. Violinist Christina Gaismeier possesses a more refined approach, while fiddler Jock Brocks complements her nicely with a more traditional style of playing. Brocks also contributes mandolin and banjo, and charter member Alex K├Ânig provides the lion's share of picking on guitar, bouzouki, mandolin, and banjo. Andy Neumeister plays bass, as well as acoustic guitar. Collectively, the group exhibits a wonderful symbiosis. No member demands center stage; rather, Ballycotton thrives on the input, subtle or otherwise, of every member.

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