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Kila - Tog E Go Bog E
KILA - "Tog E Go Bog E" - Kila Records KRCD005

Irish seven piece Kila follow up their 1995 debut 'Mind the Gap' with an intriguing rhythm based opus that is a heady cocktail of crossover styles from around the world which is definitely shaken, not stirred.

The band create a fine range of instrumental tracks using only traditional tools. In the opener 'Gwerzy', Bretonesque flute, whistle and uillean pipes dart about like fireflies chased by a posse of percussion. 'Dusty Wine Bottle' has hints of Galician colourings, and 'Rusty Nails' eases slowly and spookily in, like Loyko playing a Hammer House Russian gangster soundtrack which canters via 'The Three Legged Race' into a well paced, rattlin' set of reels.

On this lengthy disc, there is a welcome diversion from Eoin Dillon to create the 'Siege of Carrickfinn International Airport' in a scintillating solo piping showcase.

The songs disappoint. Four out of the five vocal tracks are in gaelic, delivered in cod ragga style which unfortunately sound like Harry Belafonte on a bad night down at the peace camp, especially on 'Leanfaidh Me' and the title track, which must sell fizzy fruit drinks by the gallon down on the palm fringed shores of Kerry.

But thankfully this is no new age crustie groovefest, there are many instrumental highlights, showing the depth of talent and imagination of this group. All the tunes are self penned, the arrangements original and imaginative, especially on the funky 'Double Knuckle Shuffle' with its intriguing middle string section, whilst 'Jasmine' and the quite sublime 'Crann na BPingini' will pay for the cover price alone.

This album has already gone gold in Ireland and has spawned a top thirty single. In a nutshell, Kila are multi cultural, multi faceted, multi talented; shame about the songs. But definitely worth checking out what all the fuss is about.

Iain McQueen

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This album was reviewed in Issue 27 of The Living Tradition magazine.