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Venus in Tweed

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Album Review

This is the debut album from Scotland's Shooglenifty. While clearly a band rooted firmly in the folk music of Scotland, Shooglenifty could also qualify as a charter member of the Celtic jam band association given the group's propensity for wandering all over the proverbial musical map. While traditional tunes are frequently the basis for the band's melodies, it's the improvisations on those themes and the ensuing uncharted musical ground that is unveiled that make Shooglenifty unique. Invariably, those excursions include samplings of bluegrass and Middle Eastern styles, sometimes enhanced further with techno and ambient effects. But they don't rely on programmed instrumentation, as all sounds emanate from stringed instruments like fiddle, mandolin, banjo, and guitars, and are steered by an extremely tight bass and drum rhythm section. Venus in Tweeds proved to be merely the tip of the iceberg from this creative outfit from Scotland, as future releases would introduce newer and more unusual elements into the group's music.

Customer Reviews


Superb traditional with fantastic fiddle and reels.


Formed: Edinburgh, Scotland

Genre: Singer/Songwriter

Years Active: '90s, '00s

The musical traditions of Scotland have been combined with modern influences of rock, pop, jazz, and urban dance music to create the hypno-folkadelic/ambient/traditional sound of Shooglenifty. According to the Ottawa Sun, the Edinburgh-based sextet is "setting the world on fire with their super trippy blend of Celtic staples and everything from acid jazz to Latin shuffles." An offshoot of psych-bluegrass quintet Swamptrash, Shooglenifty initially came together at informal sessions at the Edinburgh...
Full Bio
Venus in Tweed, Shooglenifty
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