Sometimes, when adversity strikes, the recovery can produce outstanding results. This is exactly what happens with Matt McGinn and his latest release; Behind Every Door
Release Date: 27th October 2023
Label: Dolmen Lane Records
Format: CD / Digital
it’s been a traumatic time for Matt McGinn since his last album, Time Well Spent, graced our ears (review here). The musical equivalent of writer’s block had Matt stumbling for inspiration. “The songs had dried up. I just couldn’t write,” says Matt bemoaning this frustrating period. Fortunately, the muse has returned.
The Music opens the album to emphasise the power music has. This cheery Celtic song with strong vocals is the perfect introduction to this eclectic set of songs. Nightmare Alley, with its highly party danceable rhythm, couldn’t be as far removed in flavour from the opener as you can get. It highlights Matt’s versatility as a composer. The church organ intro leading into a cèilidh style song changes the tone yet again.
Foot tapping continues with the violin riffs on Lig Dúinn. Again, it strays from the typical Irish jig to add some originality and variation. God Only Knows and Rainbow sensitively deal with social issues and how we should tolerate differences between us.
Behind Every Door is the title track and is pure country; clearly opening his heart to a personal experience. Shine Your Light is probably as disco as an Irish folky troubadour can get, but it is nonetheless a great bopper! To The New Year is a lovely dreamy melancholic song of hope.
It is often said that the aftermath of troubled times helps us to celebrate what we have overcome and the long finale to the album Turning Of The Tide bears testament to that. Matt’s masterful arrangements with strings and uilleann pipes subtly segueing into Danny Boy along with Willie Campbell, a busker to whom the song is dedicated to. The performance at the end will stir the hairs on the back of your neck, such is its sheer beauty.
John McCullough (keys), Eamon Ferris (drums), Colm McClean (Guitars), Darragh Murphy, (Uilleann Pipes & Whistles) and Damian McGeehan (fiddle) accompany Matt and wonderfully enhance the emotion, warmth and passion which runs from beginning to end.
We are so thankful that Matt didn’t hide behind every door and rest on his laurels. Behind Every Door is a fine work.
Listen to The Turning Of The Tide below from Matt McGinn below.