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Thread: Loreena McKennitt in Echoes Podcast

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    Loreena McKennitt in Echoes Podcast

    It's a Loreena McKennitt kind of week at Echoes. Hear her talking about her June CD of the Month, "Lost Souls" in the Echoes Podcast. https://wp.me/p4ZE0X-e0W

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    Member AncientChord's Avatar
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    I've loved Loreena since first hearing her in 1992, with her album "The Visit." To me her fantastic voice shines above most in the Celtic/World music world. In the early 90's I attended three concerts, and was mesmerized, even meeting her after one show in 1994. She has been highly successful in her career, even coming back strongly after a long exit from music following a tragic personal loss. I just got her new album "Lost Souls." Her voice has remained intact and strong, but critics have called the new album the first albums of brand new music she has released in years. Not quite. Several tunes are traditional, and one, The Ballad of the Fox Hunter, is a song she never released but was performed early in her career. Another factor is the fact that on several new songs, she repeats some of the music from previous released ones. With her immense talent, I found this to be odd. However "Lost Souls" is still a good album, but since the drama she experienced in 1998, and her musical hiatus up to 2006, IMO her writing ability has taken a somewhat downward spiral. No one knows, but I think the 1998 tragedy has had a life long affect on her. Again in my opinion to me 1997's "The Book of Secrets" was her career high point. If you like dreamy, modern Celtic/World music, she's s still one of the best.
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    Yes, a fine album by a great talent. but no new ground is really broken here.

    A newcomer could start with any of her 90s studio albums, I believe, although "Book of Secrets" is certainly a high point. Another high point is her video concert, "Nights from the Alhambra." It's an excellent representation of McKennett's music and worldview, with a fantastic large ensemble and terrific performances. I wish it were available in HD.

    McKennett fans might be interested in Caroline Lavelle, cellist, singer, songwriter, and longtime Loreena collaborator. Besides her lovely solo albums, as part of a trio called Secret Sky (which includes two other Mckennett veterans), she released an album in 2016 (also called "Secret Sky") that is well worth a listen. One video and some audio are available on YouTube.

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    Member AncientChord's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rdclark View Post
    McKennett fans might be interested in Caroline Lavelle, cellist, singer, songwriter, and longtime Loreena collaborator. Besides her lovely solo albums, as part of a trio called Secret Sky (which includes two other Mckennett veterans), she released an album in 2016 (also called "Secret Sky") that is well worth a listen. One video and some audio are available on YouTube.

    Yes, Caroline Lavell is good. I didn't know about her trio Secret Sky, but I'll check it out. There's another Canadian singer you may want to hear. She's very obscure but you can hear her music on Bandcamp. Her name is Sora. In her bio she admits that Loreena McKennitt is her biggest influence, but she also possesses a lovely voice and is worth a listen. Her 2009 album "Heartwood" contains several members of Lorenna's band.

    https://sora3.bandcamp.com/
    Last edited by AncientChord; 05-31-2018 at 09:41 PM.
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    Member TheH's Avatar
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    I think "Mask and the Mirror" is by far her strongest album. She has maybe the strongest voice in the genre.

    I only have Caroline Lavelle's first solo album, but I really like it. It would have loved to hear a Duett between the two
    very different voices.


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    Member Casey's Avatar
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    Ooooooo, Sounds like Ms. Lavelle pinched a much older tune & tried to dress is up in wet clothing & uncomfortable close-ups. I submit for your consideration: https://youtu.be/yaS3vaNUYgs
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    Further down the rabbit hole again. You guys have me ordering CDs I never heard of again.
    "If you want to see the true nature of humanity, just look at the internet."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Casey View Post
    Ooooooo, Sounds like Ms. Lavelle pinched a much older tune & tried to dress is up in wet clothing & uncomfortable close-ups. I submit for your consideration: https://youtu.be/yaS3vaNUYgs
    Yes it's the melody of the Foggy Dew - I've heard quite a few folk performers do Moorlough Shore instead if they want to avoid the political/historic aspect of the original.

    The version from Caroline Lavelle's early album is nice but the version on the Secret Sky album is killer.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by rdclark View Post
    Yes, a fine album by a great talent. but no new ground is really broken here.

    A newcomer could start with any of her 90s studio albums, I believe, although "Book of Secrets" is certainly a high point. Another high point is her video concert, "Nights from the Alhambra." It's an excellent representation of McKennett's music and worldview, with a fantastic large ensemble and terrific performances. I wish it were available in HD.

    McKennett fans might be interested in Caroline Lavelle, cellist, singer, songwriter, and longtime Loreena collaborator. Besides her lovely solo albums, as part of a trio called Secret Sky (which includes two other Mckennett veterans), she released an album in 2016 (also called "Secret Sky") that is well worth a listen. One video and some audio are available on YouTube.


    While I'd pretty much agree with this assessment, It's still a damn fine enjoyable listen. Hope I can get to a show when it goes out on the road. I'd sure love to hear Brian Hughes do his solo in Bonny Swans again. Show might be worth it just for that.

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    She was through here with the trio (her, Hughes, Lavelle) at the Grand Opera House in Wilmington, a couple of years back. Pure magic, but I do hope she gets back here with the larger band that's part of her upcoming South America tour.

    And live, I'd be more than happy to hear the entire new album. It may not break new ground, as I said, but on its own merits stands shoulder-to-shoulder with her prime sequence of work, and in concert will have the great virtue of being fresh.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by rdclark View Post
    "Book of Secrets" is certainly a high point.
    That's interesting, because I remember someone who was more experienced with her music than I was telling me that one was "disappointing" compared to her earlier records. Book Of Secrets is the only one I've ever gotten around to getting, mainly because of The Mummer's Dance, which got airplay on a couple music channels we used to get on our cable TV service. Of course, the version of the song that's on the album is a bit different from the one that was used on the single and video. She hired a couple techno musicians (according to Wikipedia, the same two guys who did that dance music version of Tom's Diner by Suzanne Vega that had been a huge hit a few years earlier) to remix it, which I always thought was an odd choice, given the direction of most of her music, but I think it worked rather well.

    Years later, once Youtube rolled around, I ended up watching The Mummers Dance video again and commenting that sounded like one of those things where they record company commissioned the remix, to make it "radio friendly" or whatever, without the artist being actively involved. Someone responded that Loreena actually runs her record company, so it would have been her making such decisions. At any rate, I thought that remix worked a lot better than it should have, since on paper, it doesn't really seem like the obvious approach to take.

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    I thought that remix was interesting but distasteful on some level, but I knew she did it of her own volition so more power to her, I guess. It helped her career, and that's not nothing, and I don't think it alienated anyone, so it was all upside. But she didn't do it again, or anything much like it, afaik.

    For some fans, it's possible they were looking for something other than more of the same, even then. "Book of Secrets" was of a piece with here previous couple of albums. Turns out, twenty years later, she is still in the same sort of groove.

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    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Loreena does what Loreena does. You like it or you don't.

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    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    Loreena does what Loreena does. You like it or you don't.
    Yup. It is true that she has been doing the same thing since her thirth album where she found her style but at least she has a style completely her own.
    Beside that she is a great musician and has a crystal clear and extremely powerful voice. Although this kind of music is normally not my thing I quite like her. She is a classic.

    My favorite album of hers is actually her second 'parallel dreams'.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    Loreena does what Loreena does. You like it or you don't.


    Fair assessment I think.

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