Congratulations are in order after Adrian Crowley won the Choice Music Prize with the brilliant ‘Season of the Sparks’ album. He had some tough competition in the form of Valerie Francis’ ‘Slow Dynamo’ and Bell X1‘s ‘Blue Lights on the Runway’ among many others. A CLUAS interview with him can be read here.
I recently got Fionn Regan’s ‘Shadow of an Empire’, which has a lot more electric instrumentation than his debut ‘The End of History.’ While it doesn’t entirely veer away from the folk style he’s known for it does display his immense musical talent, sometimes experimenting with some more traditional sounds.
He has the lyrical sensibilities of Bob Dylan with the sometimes melodious and engaging vocal style of Johnny Cash. Judging by this album, Regan can only ever get more interesting and creative with his music.
The album covers a lot of different ground, starting from the raucous and hooky ‘Protection Racket’ to the personal and intimate in ‘Lines Written in Winter’. Throughout the album it seems as though not a word was wasted in the lyrics, everything has some sort of significance.
Here’s an interesting snippet of the song ‘Protection Racket’, the first single from ‘The Shadow of an Empire’.
2000 - 'Rock Criticism: Getting it Right', written by Mark Godfrey. A thought provoking reflection on the art of rock criticism.