- 20 Jul 20
His Name Is Luka.
Mr Bloom’s 22nd album has been trailed by ‘The Beauty of Everyday Things’, a song highly redolent of Co. Clare. It’s adorned by the magical guitar of Steve Cooney, while Sligo woman Niamh Farrell’s silken voice, added remotely, nicely counters Bloom’s rugged, outdoors-y tones. It also reminds one of ‘Only A Woman’s Heart’.
That sense of the outdoors is all over ‘The Day The Great Oak Fell’ too, with its plangent guitar and Bloom’s voice at its most delicate. It’s another reminder of Bloom as captivating scene-painter and wordsmith. There’s a light jauntiness to ‘Can We Stay’, a touching love song, while the album’s title-track has an almost baroque feel.
‘Who Will Heal The Land’ confronts a global question made even more urgent by the pandemonium of the pandemic. Farrell adds a spectral dimension to a wistful song that looks anxiously towards the future, ‘The Hunger’ can’t but remind us of a past pandemic of a different kind. It also comes with some plaintive fiddle from Adam Shapiro, and Bloom’s vocal occupies a space somewhere between Van and the rejuvenated Dylan.
The album ends with the measured optimism of ‘Vision For 2020’, leavened by Shapiro’s deft fiddle, Farrell’s harmonies and Bloom’s vocal – rooted as always, in his native earth.
Bittersweet Crimson is out now – and available to order/download here.