Triúr outside An Draighean. Photograph: Seán Ó Loinsigh.
Triúr Arís is the second album from the trio of Peadar Ó Riada, Martin Hayes and Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh, featuring twenty new pieces composed by Ó Riada.
Dedicated to the memory Muiris Ó Rócháin, the booklet features extensive and varied background notes on all eighteen tracks, as well as brief remarks from the three players. Ó Riada emphasises the greater freedom they are gaining ‘as we explore musically in each other’s company’. Ó Raghallaigh, whose influence is more to the fore in this recording, talks about the shift to a more divergent playing: ‘it seemed wise to find ways of trying to get out of the way of each other, instead of competing for the same space in the music all the time’. Hayes refers to their aim being to ‘fully experience the music with as much feeling as possible’ as opposed to ‘note perfect playing’.
Through words like ‘explore’, ‘learning’, and ‘trying’, there is a strong sense given of this not being seen by the musicians as a carefully planned, minutely executed, fully formed work, but rather a sharing with listeners of the development of their musical relationships through Ó Riada’s tunes (which Hayes says ‘might have [just as] easily been found in a manuscript from the nineteenth century’).
Recorded again in the Ó Riada homestead in Cúil Aodha, Co. Cork, without any ‘drop or repair edits’, the music has the same very natural sound and intimate character as Triúr sa Draighean, though the ‘note for the technophiles’ points out that ‘as we were recording in the winter and stormy weather raged outside, we used a small bit of EQ to lessen the rumble of the wind coming down the chimney.’
Mostly single tunes repeated for about two and a half/three minutes (though the jig, ‘Esmerelda’ is 4:31 long), there are five reels, six jigs, one polka (‘Maith Thú, A Mhuiris’), one hornpipe, two slides in a set, two flings in a set, an air, a song (over eight minutes long) and lastly what Ó Riada calls ‘a bit of a ditty playing with the harpsichord’ which he was given as a gift by his aunt Louise.
The trio will be playing a few gigs this summer including at the Spiddal Trad Picnic coinciding with the Volvo Ocean Race from 5 – 7 July; and at the Feakle Festival in the second week of August. They are also planning some European dates for later in the year.
Meanwhile, Triúr Arís is available to buy via peadaroriada.ie as well as in Celtic Note in Dublin, and in Custy’s in Ennis.
Published on 29 May 2012