Eleanor McEvoy,
Out There
(Moscodisc, 2006)

Out There is a CD of two parts, for some reason, with seven tracks on part one and eight on the other. The majority of the tracks come from the fair Eleanor's pen with another co-written and some excellent interpretations of the works of others.

It is many years now since Eleanor McEvoy's iconic song "A Woman's Heart" swept the world as a single, then on an excellent compilation album showcasing great female performers. After that success, many people turned to McEvoy's work and perhaps felt a little disappointment that her general material was quite different in style.

Those who understood and appreciated good writing and sincere performance were not among those disappointed.

McEvoy has a unique style and a mesmerizing delivery of her own lyrics. In fact, it is sometimes her least known items that will linger longest in the mind.

This album opens with "Non-Smoking Single Female," a track that was released as a single and achieved wide airplay. I like the song, but it is not my favourite here. That honour is divided among a number of tracks. "Vigeland's Dream" is a wonderful story-song, while "Quote I Love You Unquote," a song that bears close listening to the lyrics, intrigues me.

"Suffer So Well" is one of the best songs here, not only displaying McEvoy's writing and singing talent but also her multi-instrumental expertise. Never one to shy away from social comment, she lets it loose to great effect on "Fields of Dublin 4," giving us a look at the other side of the Celtic Tiger (Ireland's economic boom).

The solo violin piece is a becoming a staple of the McEvoy album. On this we get a 50-second offering called "Interlude: Iberius," first performed for the 10th anniversary of the Wexford Rape Crisis Centre and performed in Saint Iberius Church.

The CD will delight existing fans and win many more from those willing to give a listen to new music. The insert is well produced with poignant snippets to amuse and provoke thoughts.

by Nicky Rossiter
25 November 2006

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