A fine, enriching return...

It’s amazing to think that so much time has gone by that 'Cala' could be the sixth album from the inestimable Fionn Regan. Where does all the time go? It’s this kind of wistful sense of things which pervades throughout this fine recording. 

Fionn Regan suffered a little, from my memory, from being lumped in with the clamour to find the next Damien Rice following the runaway success of 'O' all those years ago. To equate the two, or even to equate Fionn Regan with any other artist for that matter, is somewhat unfair. He is his own man.

An artist of depth, breadth and quiet potency, Fionn Regan is a force to be reckoned with once again here. Opening trio ‘Collar of Fur’, ‘Headswim’ and ‘Riverside Heights’ are all short and sweet slices of pastoral folk of the kind Regan has made his trademark. From ‘The Ocean Wave’ on, things get a little more intense, a little more interesting. This one rolls along like the best moments of Gravenhurst from days of yore.

‘Cala’ and ‘Brass Locket’ add a little more instrumental colour to the palette of things, finding Regan in expansive and intriguing form. And so it goes on and on, a rolling paean to the greatest exponents of the art of the singer- songwriter throughout. As Autumn shows its first signs of rolling in, this is the perfect album to huddle with under the blanket in the days and weeks to come.

A fine piece of work from a criminally-underrated talent.

7/10

Words: Haydon Spenceley

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