Release Date: 20th April 2018
I have seen Celtachor once before, at Warhorns Festival in 2016, and am excited to see them back again this year (at the newly announced venue in Eggborough right next to a power station!) They recently released their new album Fiannaíocht on 20th April, so it was only fitting I had a listen.
The album kicks off with Sons of Morna, which is almost a track of two halves. The introduction is calming, and I can see myself sitting on a hill, admiring the quiet and beauty of the countryside. There are guitars, some occasional drumbeats and flute. But then you are blasted by drums and black metal style vocals. There is also some spoken word and clean vocals. The flute melody cuts through the harsh instrumentals, and the tempo does slow a little, though the harshness of the instrumental remains. The track does end back on the calming instrumentals, a mirror of the start.
King of Tara once again has a calming beginning, with guitars and strings. It becomes a dancey and jiggy track, interchanging between the harsh and clean vocals. There are also some fighting between more chaotic heavy instrumentals and the happier, jiggy moments. There is also a flute melody within the chaos. Turien begins with guitar on its own, with strings coming in a little later. You are then blasted with drums and black metal vocals. The instrumental becomes calmer with strings, spoken word and clean vocals, and there are also some more folky instrumentals.
The Search for Sadbh is a track where you can really feel the title of the track in the music. There is acoustic guitar, clean vocals and strings. It is an acoustic track which is calming, but you can also hear the lament of the track. Caolite starts with strings and guitar, before headbanging and black metal style vocals. There is also a black metal style breakdown partway through, before the instrumental comes back in with a spoken word section. The track then transitions back into a black metal style.
Great Ships Came from over the Waves is a calming, instrumental track with flutes, followed by guitar and strings entering the mix. The Battle on the Shore has a flutes, strings and drum buildup before the full instrumental comes in. The harsh vocals are back, followed by spoken word accompanied by strings, pipes and guitar. There is a faster instrumental before the tempo slows again and the spoken word returns. Tears of Aoife is a lamenting pipe instrumental.
Cauldron of Plenty kicks straight in with a full instrumental and harsh vocals. The instrumental calms with strings, pipes and clean vocals, before a buildup with spoken word and then back into the harsher instrumentals. The track fades out. Dubh, Dun Agus Liath begins with guitars, and a slow tempo with the harsh vocals. It has a very epic feel to it. There is a calming section with strings, and the vocals alternate between clean and harsh vocals. The track ends with an epic feel and spoken word, a fitting end to the album.
I am really looking forward to seeing Celtachor live again at Warhorns Festival, and possibly later this month at Temple of Boom in Leeds. As I said with the latest Cruachan review , it is not often that Irish folk metal is heard, it is more often the more Northern European folk metal that fans are more familiar with.
Buy Fiannaíocht: https://celtachor.bandcamp.com/
Celtachor Headline Show in Leeds, 26th May: https://www.facebook.com/events/150165509076527/?ref=br_rs
Warhorns Festival 2018: https://www.facebook.com/events/1504041606304639/