Not since the debut of Solas has an Irish traditional band been aslavishly praised as has Lunasa since its 1997 eponymous debut. Itsfollow-up, “Otherworld,” proves the group worthy of all the hype andthen some. With a front line of flute, pipes and fiddle whose cohesionrecalls the legendary Bothy Band, and propelled from the bottom by thedriving double bass of ex-Waterboy Trevor Hutchinson, Lunasa brings ajazzlike sense of swing and improvisation to this mix of traditionalnumbers, originals and covers
.The core members of the quartet all have worked in some of Celticmusic’s best bands-the Sharon Shannon Band, Coolfin and Moving Cloudamong them-and that experience pays off in furious playing, fleetimprovisations and fine arrangements. Named after an ancient Irishharvest festival, Lunasa brings the world of traditional Irish musicsome sweet fruits indeed.
-Kevin B. Convey