by Danielle Holian
Cúla Búla is the Irish language term for “cool”. It is also the name of a seven-piece Irish trad-rock band based in Galway. They have quickly become regulars on the streets, charming the crowds across Ireland as well as keeping the night lively when playing in bars with their high energy. And with influences like Dropkick Murphys, The Pogues, Horslips and Kila, where could you go wrong? And yes, these guys live up to the definition.
There is individual talent, determination, and versatility which pieces them greatly together. They bring something new to the music scene. And with their album Is It? with many jigs and reels across the album, it’s safe to say you won’t be wasting your time listening to it! It’s a musical adventure of Irish-trad rock.
“Stick The Kettle On”, introduces us to the album; the contrast between this delicate as well as humorous track and the rest of the album gives a great taster of what to expect. In a few words, it is an ear-catching track. It’s a perfect starter to the album.There are a few tracks
There are a few tracks across the album where there is no vibration of a vocal cord, it concentrates more on the good music. Some tracks like “Cuppan Tae”, and “Spanish Misfortune”, bring a sense of warmth and a mellow moving experience whilst listening to them. They fused elements of Irish trad and rock to create an excellent stirring yet striking sound.
A slow build to a fast paced instrumental song, building up to a rush of love “Enchantment”, lives up to its name. The story within the song is quite endearing. Pulling on your heartstrings, capturing your inner thoughts and bringing you to destination of surrendering. It’s an emotional ballad.
Each song on this album brings something new to the listener. “Bella Ciao”, was recorded in the Irish language, but originated during the Italian civil war, meaning ‘Goodbye Beautiful’. It is used as a hymn of freedom and resistance worldwide, it is beautifully recorded and gets one up to dance around the kitchen table. Compared to “Fair Little Child” which is a calming, peaceful and relaxing tune which slowly brings out a force of nature. Nonetheless, this is a great ballad. Their talent doesn’t shine away.
To summarise the album features uplifting vocals and exciting instrumentation. The overall sound on the album is more than just Irish-trad rock. There’s more to it. It’s interesting, amusing, intriguing. Each track is unique to its own with different elements coming together. It’s rare to come across something so well written musically with the ability to free oneself while listening to an album. It’s so carefree and fun combining emotive, sensitive and humorous styles with traditional Irish and rock influenced elements.