EAMON FRIEL – The Streets Forget (Thran Records THR 1008)


Eamon Friel album review

Eamon Friel

Eamon Friel is the kind of songwriter I could listen to all day. He manages to capture your imagination with seductive lyrics that remind me of the time I first heard Ralph McTell back in the days of the album “You Well Meaning Brought Me Here”.

The reason I mention this is that I’m listening to the opening track “All The Fun Of The Fair” with a real lump in my throat as I conjure quite vividly the sites and sounds of my childhood spent at the fairground in Mitcham, Surrey with those massive steam organs playing ‘carousel’ tunes and the sounds of laughter from over excited children honing their driving skills on the dodgems…oh to be back then.

Now, it might be Friel at the helm lyrically speaking but the arrangements by Eddie O’Donnell provides the chocolate sauce on top of a bowel of profiteroles and the filling is provided by a cast of fine musicians including Marie Clarke (accordion), Tracey McRory (fiddle), Liam Bradley (drums & percussion) and Ciaran O’Donnell on bass.

In addition to some fine instrumental work, on the amusing “The Man Of Few Words” we’re treated to a lilting chorus that so typifies Ireland’s occasional off-kilter culture in that diddly-i-day kind of way.

This recording proved a thoroughly enjoyable listen and if there were any justice the opening track would be a ‘sleeper’ hit this Christmas.

PETE FYFE