Celtic Woman,
A New Journey: Live at Slane Castle
(Manhattan, 2007)

Slane Castle is the perfect backdrop for the second Celtic Woman concert on DVD. The castle is all lit up, and Celtic Woman is in top form.

This marks the first appearance of Hayley Westenra as the newest member of CW. I have to admit when I heard she was joining the group, I wondered why they were fixing a formula that wasn't broken. I will tell you now, happily, I was wrong. I really enjoyed listening to her sing and thought she made a great addition to this group of extraordinarily gifted women.

The music is as wonderful as I had expected, and I watched the DVD twice today. I had the opportunity to see Celtic Woman in concert this summer. There were several songs they performed that night that I had never heard them sing before; I remember hoping they were going to record them. They did.

The one song I really wanted them to record was "At the Ceili," a fun little song about women going to a party and seeking out men. It is upbeat and impossible not to want to clap along or tap your foot. Meav, Lisa and Orla sing that song and they really look like they are having a good time doing it.

Another favorite is "Pacific Slope." Mairead is playing her fiddle, with the accompaniment of two dueling bodhran players. I love when they do that. The audience is clapping along, while Mairead dances around barefooted. She is quite the performer.

This is a wonderful DVD and Slane Castle is a beautiful setting. Sadly, however, they once again performed "Orinoco Flow," "Danny Boy," "Somewhere" and "You Raise Me Up," which appeared on previous recordings. While I love those songs, I was sorry to see them again. The arrangements remained the same, and I would have preferred four new songs.

review by
Cherise Everhard

5 January 2008

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