Stories from the Steeples four star review by MOJO
The award-winning Irish singer's first album of new material in six years.
It's all about the songs - each handpicked and worthy of Black's interpretative touch. Material like All The Fine Young Men, an anti-war anthem by the great Eric Bogle, and Marguerite And The Gambler, a song by Cork's Ricky Lynch that takes its inspiration from The Falconer, a painting displayed in a Cork Art gallery. Then there's the totally melodic Wizard Of Oz, one of three compositions donated by young songwriter Danny O'Reilly, that could easily become a standard. Add such guest-assisted goodies as Walking With My Love, which boasts the talents of Finbar Furey, along with Mountains To The Sea (with Imelda May) and Lighthouse Light (with Janis Ian), wrap the whole in a production that appeals both to a commercial audience and one that favours a more traditional approach, and Black has achieved the perfect meld.