Lennon Kelly "Lunga Vita al Re" (2015) Indie Box IBX044
Release date: 24 March 2015
Running time: 37:05, 10 tracks
After a 7 track album, the Italian band Lennon Kelly has just released their debut album “Lunga vita al re” (“Long Live the King”). Most of the tracks on the album are written by band members Vasco Abondanza a.k.a. “Bartowski” and Constantino Valentini a.k.a. “Roman”, but there are a track based on a Giuseppe Bartoli poem, a cover of “Drunken Sailor” whose lyrics have been written by Gorg Scur band member Mino Savadori and a cover of Steve Earle’s “Galway Girl”. All of the songs are sung in Italian, with the exception of “Un marineri imbarigh a e Ziznatich” (in Romagnol dialect) and “Galway Girl” (in English).
Lennon Kelly keeps on blending Celtic music with Italian music and “Lunga vita al re” puts them together with other Italian acts like Mosche di Vellutto Grigio or Modena City Ramblers. In fact MCR’s flutist Franco D’ Aniello guests on some tracks. At the very beginning Franco was hired to play his flute on the closing number. However, he fell in love with a couple of songs and he played his flutes on them too.
The album kicks off with “C.P.I.” C.P.I stands for Italian Political Class. There is a spoken intro, a speech by Sandro Pertini, former Italian President from 1978 to 1985 and one of the few Italian politicians really loved by the Italians. But the real song is a semi-instrumental number in the Flogging Molly song “Swagger” vein. The next number is another great moment, “Tra orizzonti e cantine”: mandolin, fiddle, accordion and flutes by guest Franco D’Aniello will make you love this song.
Lennon Kelly shifts to the Italian music on the next two numbers. Franco D’Aniello also guests on “Sangue e sale”, a song featuring electric guitar and“Lunga vita al re” has a catchy Italian accordion sound and some ska guitar.
“Festa al fiume” is the number that Celtic punk fans will enjoy: a fast-paced anthem where accordion and tin whistle set the pace. It's a song to be filed together with Finnegan’s Hell’s CDs. The next number is the banjo led cover of “Drunken Sailor”, “Un marineri imbarigh a e Ziznatich”. Lennon Kelly has merged both “Drunken Sailor” and “Drowsy Maggie” on their rendition.
“Sette nodi” is a familiar song, since it can be found on their previous mini-album too. This one features the well-known “Morrison’s” jig
“Galway Girl” was recorded as a single in 2014 (You can watch the video HERE).As I wrote when I reviewed Keily’s Folk album, this song is really enjoyed by Italian bands, since Lennon Kelly, Keily’s Folk and Meneguinness have covered “Galway Girl”. Lennon Kelly’s rendition is really remarkable, thanks to the electric guitar arrangements.
To finish up, Lennon Kelly delivers a ballad called “Il santo bevitore” and a song based on a poem by Giuseppe Bartoli, “La Morte di Corbari”. Modena City Ramblers' flutist plays too on this amazing number.
“Lunga vita al re” comes in a jewel case with an 8 track booklet. The lyrics to all the songs, thank-yous and full credits are stated on the booklet and back cover.
Fans loving folk rock bands blending Celtic influences with their own local folk music will appreciate this amazing work by Cesena’s finest band, Lennon Kelly.
01 - C.P.I. 2:19
02 - Tra orizzonti e cantine 3:46
03 - Sangue e sale 3:58
04 - Lunga vita al re 3:27
05 - Festa al fiume 2:37
06 - Un marineri imbarigh a e Ziznatich 3:11
07 - Sette nodi 4:21
08 - Galway girl 3:10
09 - Il santo bevitore 4:52
10 - La morte di Corbari 5:37
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Review by Kinksmarkham