Eileen Ivers - Scatter the Light
An American of Irish heritage, Ivers here blurs the line between Irish music and Americana, the stateside genre that also has roots in Ireland. A GRAMMY Award winning musician, Ivers has been dubbed "the Jimi Hendrix of violin" by the New York Times. The paper was referencing Ivers' virtuosity; she doesn't literally set her instrument on fire like Jimi did but there may very well have been hot embers on the studio floor when she recorded "Chase the Blues Away," a lively dance number with jaw-dropping riffs. "Gratitude" is equally impressive, albeit slowed down to reflect a more somber mood fit for showing appreciation. "Zero G (And I Feel Fine)" is an homage to astronaut John Glenn's comment as he orbited the Earth in 1962, and Ivers' fiddle work is so joyous that it sounds like she was right up there enjoying the view with him. "Leap of Faith," one of the album's vocal numbers (about half are instrumentals) is one of the more Irish-sounding cuts; so is "Children Go" which also adds a touch of psychedelia. "Wah-Wah One Violin" is a funky instrumental with multi-tracked violins that sounds like it could have been on the soundtrack to a Blaxploitation film, and "Road Trip" is the perfect groove to put the pedal to the metal. Ivers is a nine-time All-Ireland fiddle champ and it shows like crazy here.