Malinky - The Unseen Hours

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Music samples


(November 2005) 12 tracks: Edom o Gordon * Clerk Saunders * Hughie The Graham * The Scotia Set * Sean O Duidhir a’ Ghleanna * King Orfeo * Flowers of Saskatchewan * Inertia Reels * The Bonnie Banks o’ Fordie * The Icon Jigs * The Sun’s Cousin * My Ain Countrie.

Few new Scottish bands of recent times have made such an impact as Malinky - this Scots/Irish five-piece band has emerged as one of the hottest properties on the international Celtic scene.

Winners of a Danny Award for their open-stage performance at the Celtic Connections festival in 1999, Malinky went on to tour widely and become regarded as one of Scotland’s premier instrumental and vocal outfits.

The band's song-centred repertoire combines a deep appreciation of tradition with a vibrant freshness of approach, taking in both the classic ballads and outstanding and original songwriting, alongside sparkling instrumental sets.

On this, their third album, the line-up has undergone a couple of changes - singer Karine Polwart is moving on, to be replaced by the outstanding young vocalist Fiona Hunter, while button box player Leo McCann is replaced by Ewan MacPherson (mandolin, mandola, guitar, tenor banjo, vocals). Jon Bews (fiddle, vocals), Steve Byrne (vocals, bouzouki, guitar) and Mark Dunlop (whistles, bodhran, vocals) continue to be key members of the group.

With three of the five sharing lead vocal duties, and the entire group contributing backing vocals, the richness and breadth of their song palette is second to none, leaving listeners spoilt for choice between Fiona’s cool lyrical clarity, Steve’s Angus-accented resonance and Mark’s soulful, Ulster-style delivery.

All five, too, are noted as sympathetic and imaginative accompanists, responding fluently to the intrinsic mood and shape of a song, while weaving in colours and rhythms borrowed from a wide swathe of traditional and contemporary sources. Steve has also been hailed as one of Scotland’s talented young songwriters, while Mark, Jon and Ewan contribute strong original tunes into the mix.

Produced by John Moran.

"The first part of the story may be over, but a new exciting chapter has definitely begun." (The Scotsman)

Scottish Folk Band Of The Year - MG Alba Scots Trad Music Awards 2010

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