Well, it certainly provides an apt title for this latest offering, which is sure to please his ever expanding international fanbase, whilst at the same time establishing Daoirí as perhaps the most prominent vocal exponent currently working in the Irish folk music tradition.
Although in some respects similar its predecessor, True Born Irishman, this, his third album – produced and arranged with the usual deft collaborative touches of the legendary Dónal Lunny – has an even stronger sense of timelessness, reflected in the choice of opening track The Galway Shawl.
Those amongst us of a certain vintage have probably heard more than enough hackneyed versions of that particular ditty to last a lifetime. However, Daoirí and Dónal, alongside Pat Daly’s fiddle, have pulled a rabbit from the hat by collectively conjuring up an interpretation of surprising beauty.
Whilst a majority of tracks are underpinned by Daoirí’s bouzouki, the sense of space afforded by the instrument’s tonality provides the perfect accompanying foil for his voice, and this wonderfully arranged collection retains its variation by way of Lunny’s numerous multi-instrumental flourishes, enhanced by snatches of accordion, fiddle, pipes and whistles.
Despite the mix of both traditionally arranged and relatively recent material, Daoirí’s distinctively intense vocals make it difficult to tell the difference (there are, however, wonderfully informative sleeve notes that accompany throughout).
Whilst vocal comparisons have been made to Christy Moore and Paul Brady, amongst others, in some respects he is perhaps more reminiscent of Scotland’s Dick Gaughan with his unique, almost pipe-like, slow air-style of phrasing.
But to my ears, it is the strong sense of uillean piping ornamentation and sean-nós tradition in Daoirí’s vocals that give them such thrilling immediacy.
And it is in closing proceedings with Liam Weldon’s intriguing Via Extasia that they achieve full expression on what Daoirí himself is said to have described as ‘one of the most beautifully and poetically written songs that I have ever come across’.
A fine way to conclude a fine album.
AudioCelt Star Rating: 5 out of 5