Saturday, December 6, 2008


The Irish folk-rock band Loudest Whisper created several musicals in the 1970s, of which Maiden of Sorrow was the third and last. However, unlike their previous production The Children of Lir, this was not recorded for a professional release at the time. This tape of a live 1975 performance was not exhumed for CD release for many years, and as even the Loudest Whisper website acknowledged, it "was taken from low-grade tapes, and can only be recommended to fanatical completists, despite the high quality of the music." Actually there are worse amateur recordings around, but the warning holds true: some of the instruments and voices come through reasonably well, but there are also numerous pops and extraneous noises caught on the vocal mic, and the balance (particularly in the singing) is substandard, to the point where it's sometimes difficult to make out some words. In a two-act, 75-minute extended musical tale of sorts where the words are necessary to follow the story, that's a problem. Like The Children of Lir, it mixes elements of folk-rock with Irish folk music, with a multi-suite structure that owes some debts to theatrical musicals, classical music, and progressive rock concept albums (particularly in the prominent keyboards, choirs, and orchestration). As a piece of music, a good recording of this would have been interesting for these reasons, even if there's a feeling of over-reaching (and overlong) ambition and pomp that would have worked better as seen in a community theater than experienced on record. If that's an approach that interests you, however, you'd be better off seeking The Children of Lir, which was reissued on CD with bonus tracks by Sunbeam in 2006. ~ Richie Unterberger, All Music Guide
Tracks :

Act I
Act II

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Ripped by : evermoreblues
Artwork Included


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