‘Timing is Everything’ – debut album from Siobhán Smith, fusing eternal lines of tradition(August 17, 2013)
When I heard the opening track of ‘Timing is Everything’ my first impression was of more than a touch of Americana, later to realise that this album owes as much to the lilt of Ireland as the twang of America. Albeit a native of New York, the album’s creator Siobhán Smith had an upbringing immersed in traditional Irish music and that 'double-mix' of heritage flows strong through her music.
Classically trained on violin, viola and flute, Siobhán also studied the tradition under Galway fiddler Pete Kelly. Absorbed in the traditional music scene while fiddling and dancing across America, she migrated to Dublin in 2006 and it’s from Ireland she’s launches her debut album ‘Timing is Everything’. There’s little doubt that the mingling of influences and styles from both sides of the pond has created a vibrant album that engages from dynamic songs to iridescent tunes. Siobhán is unafraid to feed her music on this melange of inheritance and in the process create something exceptional.
The songs reach out with their narratives, there’s unbridled Americana drive on ‘It Must Be Love’ - foot-stomping, fiddle rocking with a vengeance, and again with the gospel-tinged ‘Who Will Sing For Me’ complete with lovingly layered harmonies. And with its expressive lyric ‘The Weakness in My Soul’ builds on a tantalising banjo and fiddle interplay. A velvety Celtic influence flies through tunes that alternate through soft and gentle to spirited and animated. The majestic ‘A Midnight’s Dream’, the vivacious energy of ‘The Happy Out Jigs’ and the infectious joy of the flute through the irrepressible ‘Sunday Scoops’. The reflective ‘Teardrops On My Fiddle’ and the emotive ‘The Road Not Taken’ bring to mind distant memories of homes far away and days gone by, while ‘The Melting Pot Set’ inspires your toes to tap and feet to dance.
Drawing on the heartbeats and fusion of eternal lines of tradition ‘Timing is Everything’ serves up a mix that will not fail to please. Find ‘Timing is Everything’ at www.siobhansmithmusic.com
Reviewer: Dan Holland