Rura – Live at the Old Fruitmarket

Album Review | Self Release | Review by Allan Wilkinson

It’s hard to believe that Rura have been together now for ten years, during which they have delighted audiences across the globe with their own special brew of instrumental Celtic music.  To celebrate their first decade, the four musicians, Steven Blake, Jack Smedley, David Foley and Adam Brown, invited a handful of pals along to Glasgow’s Old Fruitmarket back in February, for the final day of the Celtic Connections Festival to join them for a concert to remember and luckily, someone had the tape was rolling.

Among the band’s vibrant instrumentals, which run the gamut of emotions, from fast paced stompers such as “Dark Reel” and “Day One” to the more sublime “In Praise of Home” and “I’ll Never Forget” interspersed with its engaging spoken field recordings.  Adam Holmes changes the mood with a couple of his own songs, “Mary” and “Weary Days”, reminding us once again of what an incredible voice he’s in possession of, a sentiment the audience fully agree with judging by the applause.  Despite the adrenaline rush of some of the performances here, none of them appear rushed or hastily rendered, but is instead are delivered with composure and much regard for the material, creating an event that I for one, would have liked to have attended.  It would’ve been a fitting live finale in light of the craziness that was to follow a couple of weeks later and which continues to plague us almost eight months on.

Choice Track: Day One (NSV 508)