Na Prádle
fernhill
CD only BEJOCD-51
 

'A terrific recording of a band in great form on a special night. When you listen to it you really do feel you're in the room with them… Absolutely brilliant CD.'
Mike Harding BBC Radio 2

Na Prádle is extraordinary. A live recording made by Czech radio at a theatre in Prague, it’s as stark, harsh and evocative as anything you’ll hear this year. And yet it’s also majestically hypnotic. Julie Murphy’s commanding voice cuts through the Divadlo na Prádle (Theatre at the Laundry!) with passion, power and grace. It’s a formidable performance from Murphy, demonstrating the uncompromising strength of the human voice when used without frills or guile on a selection of mainly Welsh folk songs.
Yet the brooding menace of Murphy’s tour de force is brilliantly undercut by the sinister trumpet and piano accompaniments of Tomos Williams giving it all an eerie, bluesy edge. With songs of dark desires like Bredon Hill and Grey Cock, it adds to a terrible beauty that, unusually for a live album, is as transfixing to the CD listener as it clearly was to the Czech audience.
Sounding very different and far bolder than any previous line-ups of Fernhill, the trio is completed by Ceri Rhys Matthews playing guitar and flute.
Colin Irwin, fROOTS

‘Captures all the Welsh band’s intensity and beauty in a live setting. Singer Julie Murphy delivers powerfully on such songs as Bredon Hill and The Grey Cock. Rhys Matthews accompanies on guitar and flute, and Tomos Williams adds gorgeous layers of texture to the moody sound. Lovely stuff.’
Sing Out! (USA)

‘Those who were lucky enough to attend the "Voice of the Earth" spectacle at Quimper in the summers of 2004 and 2005 will tell you: Julie Murphy has one of the most sublime voices on the Celtic planet. She has proved it both in her solo albums and those made with the band Fernhill, of which she is the heart and soul… the voice is, from beginning to end, a true enchantment’.
Charles-Henri Lestelle, Trad Magazine, France (awarded the magazine’s prestigious ‘Bravo!!!’)

‘A tapestry of song that clearly engages the audience and offers a unique sound, one that the group has been refining through 10 years of international touring,’
Dirty Linen (USA)

‘Julie’s stunning, evocative voice dominates the songs, weaving the lyrics in and out of wonderfully inventive and sensitive musicianship to create an atmosphere from the very depths of being – love, angst, heart-ache, sorrow. This is a special sound – a richness developed from many sources making an emotional journey through the heart of Wales and England via Eastern Europe.
‘All the tracks are special and multifaceted but Grey Cock particularly impinged on me – initially unaccompanied then brought so clearly to life with the trumpet providing pressured, rasping tones which shouldn’t fit with Julie voice or the soft full sounds of the guitar but do beautifully.
Gwalch is also a track full of variety and European influence and there is lovely mesmeric flute playing on Folantein to complement the singing. Then there is the sensitive piano and flute on Lloer Dirion…oh, and the rendition of Whilia is good too…’
Sue Swift, English Dance & Song

‘Demonstrates Fernhill’s talents to the full…. Julie’s voice can only be described as superb, accompanied by the sympathetic guitar work of Ceri and the sleazy, bluesy trumpet-playing of Tomos... Definitely folk based, the album has strong jazz, blues and soul influences which give it uniqueness. I will be playing this CD often.’
Ivor Phillips, Shreds & Patches

Recorded by Czech radio at Divadlo na Prádle (theatre at the laundry) in Prague, Fernhill’s first live album presents highlights of an intimate concert which formed part of the band’s wider tour of the Czech Republic in March 2006, supported by the British Council. The CD evokes the soundscape of fernhill as trio. Fronted by the wonderfully emotive vocals of Julie Murphy, the line-up also features Ceri Rhys Matthews (guitar and flute) and Tomos Williams (trumpet and piano).

Track listing

Track 1 Whilia
Track 2 Llatai
Track 3 Bredon Hill
Track 4 Grey Cock
Track 5 Gwalch
Track 6 Folentein
Track 7 Lloer Dirion
Track 8 Chwant

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