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Eleven Songs

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Album Review

Presumably taking a page from the Leonard Cohen Book of Self-Explanatory Album Titles, Luka Bloom's Eleven Songs finds the Irish singer/songwriter building on the strength and diversity of his previous sets, Innocence and Tribe, and demonstrates that maturity is suiting Bloom quite well. While Bloom's early albums were compelling in their spirited insouciance (especially Riverside) and he hasn't entirely lost touch with this side of his muse (as he demonstrates on "Fire"), there's a more graceful balance to most of these Eleven Songs, and he achieves a painterly sense of fine detail in songs like "I Hear Her, Like Lorelei" and "I Love the World I'm In" that's literate and engaging. Bloom's voice has also mellowed just a bit with time, and hearing him bring these songs to life with his rich, burnished instrument is truly a pleasure. Eleven Songs was produced by Bloom in collaboration with David Odlum, and they've given the material a natural, unforced sound that's powerful in its simplicity; while a string section adds to the drama of several tracks and a choir decorates three others, by and large the arrangements are spare and all the more effective for their willingness to let Bloom's simple, forceful melodies and strong, expressive voice tell the tale. It's a testament to Bloom's strength as a performer than he's able to stretch a song as simple as "When Your Love Comes" to six minutes without losing his grip on the tune's emotional power, with his voice pulling the listener along with understated but very real force. Eleven Songs may seem like a generic and colorless title for an album, but this collection shows how much Luka Bloom can do with simple materials, and it's a consistently satisfying work.

Customer Reviews

Another great one from Luka

Another top record from Luka, eastbound train & don't be afraid of the light are two that sound out of the crowd. Check out his back collection cos its well worth a listen.


Born: 23 May 1955 in Newbridge, Ireland

Genre: Singer/Songwriter

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

A singer and songwriter whose music is defined by passion, lyricism, and a respect of tradition coupled with a willingness to defy expectations, Luka Bloom is one of Ireland's best-respected contemporary folk artists. Bloom was born Kevin Barry Moore in Newbridge, County Kildare, Ireland on May 23, 1955. The youngest of six children, he grew up in a musical household; his oldest sibling is the celebrated folk musician Christy Moore, while his parents and siblings all play instruments. As a youngster,...
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