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BRIEGE MURPHY "The Longest Road" Spring Records SCD1034

The highlight for me was "The Hills of South Armagh", contrasting life in New York with home in Armagh. Simple and thought provoking especially the lines "my man has 2 jobs etc ... " In common with all the songs, the tunes are attractive, this one having some similarities to "The Curragh of Kildare".

Briege has a great voice and the sympathetic and restrained accompaniment lets you hear every word.

Of the eleven songs, nine are written by Briege and one is traditional. The songs are all similarly paced the album presumably serving to set down her songs. the voice quality is comparable to the best of the Irish contemporary women singers. With the attraction of a lovely local accent it is interesting to speculate how she would fare with the kind of production that American artists such as Nancy Griffiths get.

The album is released on Colum Sands' Spring Records label. Colum has an ear for a good song, and a good singer, he has unearthed another gem here.

John Muirhead

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This album was reviewed in Issue 15 of The Living Tradition magazine.