Whyte – Fairich

Album Review | Self Release | Review by Liam Wilkinson | Stars: 3/5

Whether the term ‘Gaelic Ambient Electronica’ excites or offends the ear, this frankly resplendent collaboration from composer and musician Ross Whyte and Gaelic singer-songwriter Alasdair Whyte is an album that simply has to be heard.  Fairlich is the Gaelic word for awaken, sense or feel, and from the very first note of “Gaoir”, it’s clear that the Whytes are eager to stimulate even the most dormant parts of our consciousness with their stirring soundscapes.  Ross’s ethereal synths and samples flow unobtrusively beneath Alasdair’s reedy vocals on such tracks as “Fuaim An Taibh” (The Ocean’s Sound) and “Cumha Ni Mhic Raghnaill” (The Sister’s Lament) whilst “Leis A Bhata” (The Black Oaken Boat) welcomes the guitar of Laurie Cuffe as well as the invigorating sound of a string quintet.  With extensive liner notes which complement each of the seven tracks, Fairich provides an often cinematic plunge into the depths of electronica and Gaelic song, and it does so without ever losing itself in the tide of intricate sound textures thanks to Ross and Alasdair’s impeccable command over their art.