Only Stories (Let the Cards Fall Revisited) The Breath
- 1Only Stories (Acoustic)03:53
- 2Let it Calm You Down (Acoustic)06:41
- 3All That You Have Been (Acoustic)04:37
- 4No You Keep It (Acoustic)04:31
- 5Hide Out (Acoustic)05:08
- 6Boat Song (Acoustic)04:47
- 7Will You Wait (Acoustic)04:19
- 8Let The Cards Fall (Acoustic)05:06
Info for Only Stories (Let the Cards Fall Revisited)
In November 2018, singer Ríoghnach Connolly and guitarist Stuart McCallum embraced, beaming out at an audience that had leapt to their feet at the close of their intimate show in Brighton. They too had felt that something very special had just happened.
Stuart and Rioghnach are the creative heart of The Breath. For this show, they had performed their first duo set, minus their full band, allowing their extraordinary connection to shine through. Stripped bare, they found a new depth and beauty in their unadorned, heartfelt songs that had connected with their audience in such a remarkable way.
A few weeks later, they travelled from Manchester to Real World Studios to re-record eight tracks; five taken from their highly acclaimed 2018 release, Let the Cards Fall. In a set-up that mimicked the gig setting, tracks were recorded in one take, live, immediate and in the moment.
“Whilst feeling a bit daunting at first” says Stuart, “we knew after the Brighton gig that the space in the music allowed for more subtlety, presenting the songs in a new light and really capturing the lyrical narrative and performance nuances in an extremely intimate way. It felt important to go to Real World Studios and revisit these songs in this intimate, raw duo setting.”
Only Stories (Let the Cards Fall Revisited) is the result; a duo recording of immense power and emotion. Stuart’s beautifully insistent, infinitely subtle guitar is the perfect partner to Ríoghnach’s intoxicating, deeply passionate voice, at times, as described by the Guardian, as “tender as the grasp of a child’s hand” others, robust and intense.
Only Stories revisits a selection of the Breath’s skilfully crafted songs. Written by Ríoghnach they are raw, poetic and deeply personal, touching on subjects that mean most to her— cultural dislocation, injustices, family, love and grief. Throughout, the Celtic nuances of her voice and skilful, distinctive flute playing underscores her traditional Irish folk roots; balanced by warm, yet sparse soundscapes: their unique twist on alt-folk.
Stuart McCallum, guitar
Ríoghnach Connolly, vocals
The Breath Ríoghnach Connolly and Stuart McCallum are the creative heart of The Breath. And for them, it’s all about the song.
Connolly writes the only way she knows how; a stream of poetic consciousness giving rise to honest, personal, heartfelt songs as likely to touch on childhood summers and first love as cultural dislocation, post-colonial injustices and grief. But it’s her deeply soulful, utterly engaging, stop-you-in-your-tracks voice – whether delicate and hushed or powerful and gutsy – coupled with Stuart’s understated brilliance and their exquisitely crafted songs, that give The Breath such emotional depth.
‘Let the Cards Fall’ – with pianist John Ellis, bassist Sam Vickery and drummer Luke Flowers – is the follow-up to their 2016 breakthrough album, ‘Carry Your Kin’. A bewitching collection of songs allowed to mature and breathe without losing the widescreen, multi-textured kaleidoscope of sound that marked their debut, while refining their trademark Manchester take on alt-folk.
This album contains no booklet.