BF&R were extremely fortunate to have been able to host an amazing group known as Ranagri, pronouced RAN-A-GRI [rhymes with, High ] back in December 2014. Since that time the group have gone from strength to strength, gaining fans all over the world as well as critical acclaim for their incredible fusion of World and Celtic music. Their debut album “Fort of the hare” had been produced in Germany in 2014 and released on Stockfish Records, a highly regarded music label similar to our own Linn Records. However, as fabulous as that album is it was never granted a UK release and is now fairly difficult to find and expensive to import. Fans could pick up copies at Ranagri’s early gigs but eventually their stocks ran out therefore, as soon as the four band members found space in their busy diaries they set about recording another album.
On the 14th of September, upstairs in The Old Queens Head Exeter Road, Islington, Ranagri launched their new album entitled VOICES in front of an enthusiastic crowd of friends, fans and those who had simply guessed this to be the best thing on offer this hot Wednesday evening in Islington. I had been informed that Ranagri would perform all the songs in the sequence they appeared on the album so I was surprised to hear several familiar numbers, many of which were on their debut CD. It was only after buying “Voices” that I realised that the group had re-recorded six of the songs from “Fort of the hare” to add to the seven that together make up the new album. There is very little difference between the old and new versions of the six familiar songs. However, bearing in mind that many of Ranagri’s fans may not own their debut album, “Voices” serves as an excellent introduction to this incredible quartet.
Anyone not already familiar with the music of Ranagri but who enjoys eclectic, energetic, soulful songs built around Celtic and World Music Rhythms, will love this album. The band comprises of Eliza Marshall [Flute, bass flute, whistles, bansuris and shakuhachi] Jean Kelly [Electric harp and Irish harp] Tad Sargent [bodhran and bouzouki] Donal Rogers [ Vocals, guitar, bass, banjo and percussion] The album was recorded at Peter Gabriel’s Real World studio and The Pool Studio and was engineered by Patrick Phillips, Ollie Jacobs and Daniel Moyler. The CD can be purchased direct from Ranagri via their website http://www.ranagri.com or, if you prefer to download, from Itunes or Amazon Digital.
Also available; Tradition and The Great Irish Songbook