Sean-nos Nua

Sinead O'Connor

Vanguard Records, 2003

REVIEW BY: Duke Egbert


This sounds like the punch line to a particularly incoherent Dennis Miller routine. Sinead O'Connor, the Pope-tearin', buzzcut-wearin', ordained minister in some fringe Catholic offshoot who once upon a time had a really good CD before she got hit in the head with a blunt object, puts out an album of traditional Irish tunes that she's "been dying to make…all my life."my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Please. I just ate.

If there's one thing that's reliable about Sinead O'Connor, it's her overly histrionic nature. This tendency to be a drama diva that makes Sarah Bernhardt look sedated has resulted in one classic, must-have CD ( The Lion And The Cobra, from the late eighties) and a whole load of good old Celtic bushwa. So why is it I'm not surprised that her latest release, Sean-Nos Nua, is more statement and manifesto than music?

Sinead folks up her liner notes for us really well, telling us how these songs are all about 'enduring and unconditional love, love that can't be quenched by fires or floods' and how she considers all these songs "magical prayers," but the fact remains that almost every song on here is interpreted as some sort of social or political commentary. Worse, the songs themselves are average at best; O'Connor is no Karan Casey or Heather Rankin, and it shows in her flat, moody, meandering performances. She calls them "healing songs," but frankly the only way you'd heal anything listening to Sean-Nos Nua is when it puts you to sleep. Decent production and musicianship can't save what is, effectively, a lifeless, stale performance. It's only on "The Parting Glass" that we at all glimpse the fire Sinead started her career with, and it soon drowns in a sea of Irish melancholic mediocrity.

If you want anarchistic left-wing political drivel masquerading as liner notes, get this CD. However, if you want traditional Irish music, go buy a Chieftains CD. Don't waste your time with Sean-Nos Nua.

Rating: D+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2003 Duke Egbert and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Vanguard Records, and is used for informational purposes only.