Irish Times ReviewCo Mayo minimalist Seamus O’Muineachain has been picking up admirers with a musical style that veers between stealth, serenity and assurance. After a couple of toe-dipping EPs he finally throws caution to the howling west of Ireland wind with his debut album. The result is a tremulous if tranquil success. There are times when O’Muineachain’s piano-playing isn’t anywhere close to the subtleties of likely influences Harold Budd, Dustin O’Halloran and Hans-Joachim Roedelius. But there is a sense that it won’t take long for O’Muineachain to reach such levels. In the meantime, there is much to luxuriate in, notably the soft swells and lulls of Away with the Fairies, Any Port in a Storm and By Her Window.
Hot Press ReviewHailing from the West of Ireland, O Muineachain is a 24-year-old composer who has been writing for the piano since his teenage years. He performs regularly at folk and arts festivals around the country and his first EP received fairly extensive national radio play. Not quite jazz, not quite classical, but combining elements of several styles, his debut long-player showcases a distinctive sound that is both cinematic and hypnotic. While his pieces are not overtly influenced by Irish music, there are echoes of Seán Ó Riada and Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin in his work, especially on evocative tracks such as ‘Away With The Fairies’ and ‘Any Port In A Storm’. Elsewhere, pieces such as ‘Down I Go’ and ‘Providence’ recall Keith Jarret’s freeform improvisational approach. But O Muineachain can hold his own with the best and should find an audience for this accessible and enjoyable fare.