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Strict Joy (Deluxe Edition)

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Glen Hansard spent more than 15 years performing his spirit-tugging soul-infused alternative rock with the Frames. Popular in Ireland, the Frames never made the Atlantic crossing. It wasn’t until Hansard’s appearance with Czech songwriter Marketa Irglova in the 2007 film Once that his music reached a worldwide mass audience. The couple, linked romantically, split up at the beginning of 2009, but remained together as a musical unit for Strict Joy. Hansard has always channeled Van Morrison in his raspy soulful strut and “Low Rising” and “Feeling the Pull” are the stronger for it. “In These Arms” recalls the alluring whisper of the Frames’ finest quiet works with the added benefit of the couple’s sweet harmonies. Hansard handles the acoustic lilt of “Paper Cut” himself.  Irglova comes to the front for the piano and string beauty of “Fantasy Man” and the Celtic-folk inspired “I Have Loved You Wrong.” There is no palpable tension between the couple, but sorrow touches many of the songs and the intimacy is undeniable.

Customer Reviews

Unre-strict-ed Joy....

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful!

Its hard to put into words the magic that happens when Marketa Irglov and Glen Hansard sing and play together. It's even harder again to describe what happens when they write those songs together too.

Quite simply, this is one of the most breathtaking albums you'll hear. Pulling in the richness and colour of their heritage with one hand whilst straining towards a quality and contemporary accessibility with the other, the result is something wonderful.

If you haven't seen the film 'Once' then you really need to buy this Deluxe edition to aquaint yourself with some of the most effortless and enchanting music you'll ever hear.

Tim xx

Absolutely magic

Such an amazing album. Amazing voices. Such joy! Thanks :)


I've been a fan since "Once" and last night I got to see the duo live at St. James's Church... and it was perfect. Fell in love all over again. Beautiful.


Formed: 2006

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Formed by the Frames' frontman Glen Hansard and Czech songstress Markéta Irglová, the Swell Season (named after a novel by humanist Czech writer Josef Skvorecky) is a songwriting duo with a penchant for vocal harmonies and acoustic-based songcraft. The pop/rock twosome released a self-titled debut in 2006, several months before the appearance of the Frames' sixth effort, The Cost. Hansard and Irglová also appeared as working-class immigrants in the popular Irish movie Once, which was presented at...
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Strict Joy (Deluxe Edition), The Swell Season
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