Bantum – Irish Band Of The Week
This week’s Irish Band of the Week is Cork/Dublin based Bantum. The collaborative effort between Cork man Ruairí Lynch and soul singer Loah is a lesson in just how well Irish music melds together. Almost five years on from the release of their incredibly well-received debut album, Legion, their second major release, Move, earlier last year has been building upon that well-established reputation of forward-moving Irish soul music. This sophomore release pays even more homage to the brilliance to be found within Irish music with features from the likes of Rusangano Family, Senita, Loah and newcomer, Farrah Elle.
Move shows the intrinsic importance of cultivating art, four years on from Bantum’s debut album conveys a certain surefootedness to the music, the sound has a much more polished undertone whilst the lyrics are laden with raw emotion. The title track has a subtle brilliance to it, light to the ear and curated with a deft touch that makes the lyrics linger in one’s ear. An even more poignant track is ‘Pacing’, dedicated to the late pianist, Conor Walsh, who was noted for his extremely thoughtful but minimalist sound. Unable to fulfil his hopes of collaborating with Walsh, Lynch admits that this was his way of not only remembering the artist but allowing his unique sound to be a part of the music, in spite of his untimely passing; ‘The piano line is just me trying to sound like Conor – just a heavily reverbed piano’. The album as a whole is a brilliant reflection on just how far Irish music is coming, these collaborative efforts amongst home-grown performers demonstrating a concerted effort to music that is both modern but holds onto the rudimental elements of classic Irish sounds.
Listen to ‘Pacing’ here: