Horslips – Happy to Meet, Sorry to Part (1972) (@256)
28 Jun 2008
Request of ldicker1.
(Review from progarchives.com, allmusic)
Founded in Dublin in 1970, this creative quintet is considered Ireland’s most critically acclaimed folk-prog band ever and possibly the genuine purveyors of the term ‘Celtic Rock’. Often likened stylistically to Steeleye Span and Fairport Convention, they drew on their distinctly Irish roots to combine traditional Celtic mysticism with driving hard rock. As opposed to similar bands who were a vehicle for one performer’s antics, no single member of Horslips really dominated the group.
Their debut album has a mixture of traditional Irish folk instruments and a hard art-rock sound recalling the sounds of Genesis from Nursery Cryme and Foxtrot.
The opening track, with its pipes, button accordion, and percussion, could pass for any Chieftains record, but then the electricity kicks in on “Hall of Mirrors” and the rest is melodic rock, not so much folk-rock as folkish rock, recalling early Genesis. John Fean sounds like he’s playing folk melodies even as he plays runs on his electric guitar on “The Clergy’s Lamentation”, and the group follows this with an anthem-like piece of Gaelic rock (“An Bratach Ban”) with a dance-like instrumental break.
“Hall of Mirrors” and “Furniture” remained in their stage act for years, the latter, with its superb middle section — favorably recalling Steve Howe’s playing with Yes on their early albums — transformed into a 15-minute epic. And just when you think you’ve got them pegged as a progressive folk-rock outfit, they deliver the exquisitely languid, almost impressionistic “The Shamrock Shore” and the playful “Dance for Yer Daddy”, which sounds like the Chieftains with vocals until the electric guitar kicks in. Fean’s playing on “The Musical Priest”, by itself, is worth the whole listening experience of the album.
- Eamonn Carr / drums, vocals
- Barry Devlin / bass, vocals
- John Fean / banjo, fiddle, guitar, mandolin, vocals
- Jim Lockhart / organ, flute, piano, violin, celeste, harpsichord, keyboards, Uillean pipes, pipe organ, tin whistle
- Charles O’Connor / fiddle, mandolin, violin, concertina, Northumbrian smallpipes
01. Happy to Meet – 0:48
02. Hall of Mirrors – 5:29
03. The Clergy’s Lamentation – 4:39
04. An Bratach Ban – 2:04
05. The Shamrock Shore – 4:34
06. Flower Amang Them All – 2:04
07. Bim Istigh Ag ol – 3:43
08. Furniture – 5:13
09. Ace And Deuce – 3:35
10. Dance To Yer Daddy – 4:37
11. Scalloway Ripoff – 1:54
12. The Musical Priest – 4:33
13. Sorry to Part – 1:32
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