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The best of Kila/Rogha
ECSTATIC ENERGY DISTILLED BY NEW TRAD PIONEERS
Adrienne Murphy, 06 Oct 2009
It’s hard to imagine the Irish musical landscape without the massive influence of Kíla. Now in their 23rd year, this band of two sets of brothers and the angelic Dee Armstrong are currently bringing their evolving, indigenous music to a third generation of hearts, souls and feet. When you go to Kíla gigs and see 18 year-old Basement Jaxx fans leaping around with middle-aged trad diehards, you’re experiencing the unique magic and cultural significance of this extraordinary band.
Without Kíla’s constantly fresh, ever-living-and-breathing approach to native music, it’s likely that an unbreachable chasm would have opened in our musical heritage, cutting younger generations off from the real roots of our innate musical sensibilities. Kíla have provided a crucial bridge between the traditional and the contemporary. Whilst joyously conversing with ‘external’ influences, particularly trance-dance, this band have sheltered the beating heart of our ancient music from the annihilating forces of cultural globalization and hegemony, at a time when indigenous musical cultures around the world are either being wiped out or consigned to the museum. I, for one, am hugely grateful for this.
Kíla gigs transmit vast amounts of ecstatic energy and a profound sense of well-being and that spirit is captured and bottled wonderfully here. Their music has the power to link us together in exhilarating celebration of one another. Scientists are finally providing hard evidence for the rejuvenating and health-giving benefits of community. Selecting highlights is almost an impossible task. From the opening ‘Tickelled’ off Mind The Gap to the previously unheard ‘Cathain Nua’ via tracks of such glorious originality and depth as ‘Glanfaidh Mé’ (Luna Park) and ‘Topattumi’ (Kila & Oki), this is a kaleidescopic, heartfelt and emotional trip.
With 25 tracks from their rake of albums over the last 20 years, this wonderful ‘best-of’ double-CD is testament to the community spirit of shared happiness through music, which is the ongoing gift of Kíla.