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An exuberant Full Set with “Notes After Dark”

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Full Set.
Full Set. 

The Irish music sextet Full Set recently completed a long U.S. tour that unfortunately did not include any New York metropolitan area performances in support of their sensational new CD Notes After Dark.

Just a few years old now, the young troupe have made a fast impression for their high-powered trad music anchored deep in the well of the tradition.

While it may be hard to keep track of all the fine ensembles emanating out of Ireland built on Comhaltas fleadh, concert or seisiun friendships, university collaborations or regional familiarities, we need to do justice to these budding artists who bring a wealth of experience and exposure along with their youthful enthusiasm to their professional stage work at a very young age.

Full Set caught our attention from the quality of their music first witnessed earlier this year out in New Jersey, but also from chatter surrounding their work in Ireland.

Notes After Dark features a brilliant and colorful group card game in progress which displays some of humorous personality that comes through their performances along with their technically proficient and tightly arranged music.

Led by one of Ireland’s leading young fiddlers, Michael Harrison from Tipperary, and percussionist Eamon Moloney also from Tipp, it includes box player Janine Redmond from Dublin along with guitarist Andrew Meaney, uilleann piper Martino Vacca (who replaced Sean McCarthy in the original group) and singer/flutist Teresa Horgan.

(On the recent tour throughout the Midwest including the prestigious Dublin Ohio Irish Fest, Michael Stribling from Florida did the honors on pipes and whistles; many over here will be familiar with Mickey from the Catskills Irish Arts Week and Northeast Tionols over the years).

The new recording has 11 tracks with four songs, three of which will be familiar to us (“Both Sides the Tweed,” “The Roseville Fair” and “Ned of the Hill”) and one new to me, a Scottish song “The Bonnie House of Airlie” all rendered tenderly by Horgan who lives in Dingle these days.

A late September U.S. tour looms for Full Set in upstate New York, New England and two days at the Celtic Classic in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania on September 27 and 28. Visit www.fullsetmusic.com.

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